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AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY 

THL INDIANS OF MANHATTAN 
ISLAND AND VICINITY 















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BY ALANSON 5KINNLR 



GUIDL LLAFLLT 5LRIL5 No. 41 



POPULAR PUBLICATIONS 
OF THE 
AMERICAN MUSEUM QF NATURAL HISTORY 



HANDBOOKS 



Those deal with subjects illustrated by the collections rather than with the objects 

themselves. 
'NORTH AMERICAN INDIANS OF THE PLAINS. By Clark Wissler, Ph.D., 
Curator of Anthropology. October, 1912, 145 pages, maps and illustrations. 
Paper, 25 cents; cloth 50 cents. 

This gives an account of the Material Culture, Social Organization, 

Religion, Ceremonies, , Arts and Languages of the Plains Indians of North 

America. 

INDIANS OF THE SOUTHWEST. By Pliny Earle Goddard, Ph.D., Associate 

Curator, Department of Anthropology. March, 1913, 190 pages, maps and 

many illustrations. Paper, 25 cents; cloth, 50 ce?its. 

A resume of our present knowledge of these interesting Indians. Among 

the subjects treated are the Spanish Conquest, Cliff Dwellings, Native 

Weaving, the Potter's Art and the Hopi Snake-dance. 

ANIMALS OF THE PAST. A popular account of some of the Creatures of the 

Ancient World. By Frederic A. Lucas, Sc.D., Director of the Museum. 

250 pages with. 41 illustrations by Charles R. Knight and Joseph Gleeson. Paper 

35 cents. 

This, now revised as one of the series of Museum Handbooks, tells of 
mammoth and mastodon, of the giants among birds, the sea lizards and the 
huge dinosaurs. 



ILLUSTRATED GUIDE LEAFLETS 

These describe some exhibit, or series of exhibits, of special interest or 
importance, or may deal with the contents of an entire hall. 

SOME OF THE LEAFLETS 

NORTH AMERICAN RUMINANTS. By J. A. Allen, Ph.D., Curator of Mam- 
malogy and Ornithology. Revised edition, February, 1904. Price, 10 cents. 

Describes the rapidly disappearing large game of North America, such 
as the Bison, Elk and Mountain Sheep. 
THE METEORITES IN THE FOYER OF THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF 
NATURAL HISTORY. By Edmund Otis Hovey, Ph.D., Curator, Depart- 
ment of Geology and Invertebrate Palaeontology. December, 1907. Price, 
10 cents. 






THE INDIANS OF MANHATTAN 
ISLAND AND VICINITY 



Guide Leaflet Series No. 41 




A MAHIKAN INDIAN CHIEF FROM THE HUDSON RIVER BELOW ALBANY 



Note his war club, the shape of which is common in his region, the thunderbirds painted or tattooed 
on his face and his bell embroidered with dyed deer's hair. His totem, the Tortoise, is at his feet 
This man and t he three Mohawk Chiefs shown following formed a party which visited England in 1709. 

From an engraving in the possession of the New York Historical Society. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND AND VICINITY. 

By Alanson Skinner, 

Department of Anthropology. 



INTRODUCTION. 



THERE is no subject which 
makes a more forceful appeal 
to the student, the historian, 
or even the general reader, than that 
of the native inhabitants of what is 
now Greater New York; yet there is 
no subject upon which it is more 
difficult to obtain information, for our 
( "olonial ancestors have left us hut few 
accounts of their observations, and 
these are in tomes that are rare and 
difficult of access. 

The aborigines themselves have so 
nearly passed into oblivion, that no 
help can be obtained from their 
scattered and degenerate remnants in 
exile in the west, so that we must turn 
to two sources for our knowledge; 
the writings of the first white settlers, 
already mentioned, and the archaeo- 
logical remains, the imperishable 
objects of stone, clay, bone and antler, 
which the vanished red men have left 
behind them on their ancient dwelling- 
places. 

The writings of the Colonists tell us 
that in appearance the Manhattans 
and their neighbors were tall and well- 
built, with black hair and eyes and 
not unpleasing faces. Their dispo- 
sition is noted as mild, except when 
aroused, when they are said to have 
been very greedy of vengeance. 

The men shaved their heads, or 
rather burned off their hair with hot 
stones, leaving often a standing roach 



of stiff black hair two or three inches 
high and as many broad, running from 
the forehead to the nape of the neck, 
and the lock which hung from the 
crown was generally allowed to grow 
much longer. This was the famous 
scalplock, which the warrior culti- 
vated in defiance of the enemy, who 
might take it if he could. Sometimes 
they wore a roach of red dyed deer 
hair, exactly similar to those worn by 
the Sauk, Fox, Menomini, and other 
tribes of the Central West today. 
Our Indians did not wear the feather 
war-bonnet so characteristic of the 
Sioux and other tribes of the (iivat 
Plains, and which is now always 
placed upon the Indians in the con- 
ventional drawings picturing the 
sale of Manhattan Island. 

The Manhattans and their neigh- 
bors, unlike the Indians west and 
north of them, wore no shirts or coats. 
Instead, they covered the upper parts 
of their bodies with robes made of 
dressed deer leather, of wolf, wildcat, 
or bear fur, or of the shimmering 
feathers of the wild turkey, neatly 
attached to a netted fabric. So closely 
and carefully were these feathers 
applied that they are said to have shed 
the rain. 

The men also wore loin cloths or 
breechclouts of dressed leather, and 
leggings and moccasins of the same 
material. The moccasins of all the 

:; 







A MOHAWK CHIEF FROM THE MOHAWK VALLEY 



Observe his tattooing and his belt embroidered with dyed deer's hair. His totem, the Bear, is 
shown at his side. 

From an engraving in the possession of the New York Historical Society. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



Indian tribes cast of the Mississippi 
had one point in common, they were 
soft -soled, but west of the Mississippi 
region the tribes of the prairies used 
hard Hat soles of rawhide for their 
shoes. 

In addition to this costume the 
warriors wore necklaces of dyed deer 
hair, of native copper or shell beads" 
or wampum; and often they hung over 
their chests pendants of stone or 
gorgets, such as are still to be found 
occasionally upon the sites of their 
old camps. They also painted their 
faces with various pigments, especially 
red and black, which they obtained 
from limonite and graphite fragments. 
To this day one may find in the debris 
of an abandoned Indian lodge bits of 
these paint stones showing the striated 
markings of the stone scrapers with 
which the color was removed for use. 
The Manhattans, being a part of the 
Delaware tribe, an important group of 
the Algonkin stock, probably followed 
the ancient Delaware custom of tattoo- 
ing their bodies, with designs represent- 
ing their dreams and warlike exploits. 

Old paintings of the Delaware show 
us that they wore their knives, and 
even their tobacco pipes and pouches, 
suspended from their necks. The 
reason for wearing their knives in this 
position, old Indians of some of the 
central western tribes declare, was so 
thai they could be more readily seized 
at a moment's notice. Besides his 
deerskin tobacco pouch, with its dyed 
hair and porcupine quill embroidery 
and leathern fringe, each warrior 
carried a war club, carved of wood, 
with a ball-shaped head set at right 
angles from the handle, and a six foot 
bow and quiver of flint, bone, or antler 
tipped arrows. 



The women were differently clothed 
from the men. They often wore their 
hair in a braid over which they drew a 
'square cap," ornamented with wam- 
pum. Presumably this hair dress was 
similar to that used by the Winnebago 
and Sauk and Fox women of the 
middle west today, examples of which 
may be found in the cases in the Wood- 
land Hall under the various tribal 
designations. 

The women, like the men, were 
naked to the waist, save for the robe, 
which was shifted from side to side, 
according from whence the coldest 
wind blew. They wore, however, knee 
leggings instead of the hip length style 
of the warriors, and wrapped about 
their waists a single square piece of 
fringed leather, which was open at one 
side exactly like a modern -heath skirt. 
Sometimes these skirts were not made 
of leather, but instead were of cloth 
woven from Indian hemp, such as was 
also used to make bags. The women 
covered their gala costumes with 
wampum beads, and quill or hair 
embroidery, so that some of the old 
chroniclers declare that a dress of this 
sort was often worth "above 300 
guilders." Of course the women, like 
the men, protected their feel with 
dainty soft-soled moccasins. 

The houses or wigwams of the Man- 
hattan and their neighbors were never 
the conical shaped, leather covered, 
painted tipis so often shown in illus- 
trations. Lodges of that type were 
only found in the Greal Plains area, 
and northward up the Mackenzie 
River and thence eastward about 
Hudson Bay and Labrador. The 
Manhattan lodges were of bark, and 
they and the other local tribes com- 
monly built either square or semi- 




A MOHAWK CHIEF FROM THE MOHAWK VALLEY. 

His totem was the Wolf, which is shown beside him. 
From an engraving in the possession of the New York Historical Society. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



globular houses of poles arched over 
and Se1 in the ground, covered with 
bark, mats made of rushes, with corn 
husks, or sedge grass. Such houses 
Looked very much like wooden bowls 
turned upside down. In the center of 
each wigwam a hole was dug in the 
earthen floor to hold the fire so that 
the sparks might not fly up and ignite 
the dry walls of the lodge. 

In such fire holes, marking the sites 
of abandoned Indian houses, archae- 
ologists may still find fire-cracked 
stones, wood ashes, the split bones of 
deer and other animals broken open 
to extract the marrow, oyster shells, 
fragments of earthen kettles, stone 
and bone implements, and all the dis- 
carded debris of the household utensils 
which were thrown away by their 
extinct owners. Sometimes in such a 
place whole articles are to lie had, 
hidden there perhaps during a sudden 
attack, and never recovered by the 
owner. There too, in winter, when the 
frozen ground outside made digging 
impossible, the bodies of the dead 
were sometimes buried in the useful 
fireplace, and the lodge either 
destroyed, or set up elsewhere. In 
proof of this skeletons have often been 
found in these forgotten fireplaces. 

The interior furnishing of a round 
lodge was simple enough. A bench 
ran all around the inside of the wall, 
and on this the inhabitants sat and 
slept. Poles swung horizontally from 
the roof, supported strings of braided 
corn, and baskets or bags of food, and 
other paraphernalia. A hole was left 
in the roof, directly over the hearth, 
for the smoke to escape. 

Another kind of house, and one that 
was probably used most frequently 
in the summer, was a square lodge. 



made of poles and bark, with a pointed 
or rounded roof in which a long slot 
was left at the ridge for the escape of 
smoke. Such a house was commonly 
occupied by a number of related fam- 
ilies, and corresponded in many ways, 
with the long tenements of the Iroquois. 
None of the houses, and few of the 
villages of the local Indians were ever 
defended by palisades or trenches. 

We arc told by the old writers, and 
archaeological investigation confirms 
them, that the household utensils of 
the Indians were pottery vessekj 
nearly always, curiously enough, made 
with a pointed bottom, so that t hex- 
had to he propped up with stones when 
in use, calabashes or gourds for water, 
spoons of shell and wood, wooden bowls 
laboriously made by burning and 
scraping knots or burls of trees, and 
bone awls and other tools. 

The Indians derived their live- 
lihood by fanning a little, for t hey 
raised corn, beans. pumpkins, 
squashes, melons, and tobacco; but 
mostly by fishing, oystering, and clam 
gathering. They also were good 
hunters, as the bones of various ani- 
mals, so common on their old kitchen 
refuse heaps, abundantly prove. How- 
ever, from the vast heaps of oyster, 
clam, mussel, and other marine shells, 
that may be found scattered about the 
old Indian camping grounds, it isobvious 
that thesea furnished most of their food. 

They caught fish in seines and gill 
nets, by harpooning, and by shooting 
with the bow and arrow; they killed 
deer and other game with the bow and 
arrow, often hunting in large com- 
panies. This was, with the waging 
of war, the duty of the men; the women 
tended the fields and probably built 
and owned the lodges. 




A MOHAWK CHIEF FROM THE MOHAWK VALLEY. 



Note the wampum belt. His totem, the Wolf, is shown beside him. 
From an engraving in the possession of the New York Historical Society 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



9 



In their fishing, and for traveling by 
water, our Indians used canoes some- 
times made from heavy elm-bark, bui 
more often hollowed out of lo<i;s. 
Roger Williams says of the Narrag- 
ansett and their neighbors: 

Obs: Misho6n, an Indian Boat, or Canow 
made of a Pino or Oake, or Chestnut-tree: 
1 have seene a Native goe into the woods with 
hi> hatchel carrying onely a Basket of Conic 
with him, and stones to strike fire when he 
had felled his tree (being a ( 'host nut ) he made 
him a little House or shed of the hark of it, 
he puts tire and followes the burning of it 
with fire, in the midst in many places: his 
corne he boyles and hath the Brook by him 
and sometimes angles for a little fish: but so 
liee continues burning and hewing until! he 
hath within ten or twelve dayes (lying there 
at his work alone) finished, and (getting 
hands), launched his boate with which after- 
ward hee ventures out to fish in the < >cean. 



Obs. Their owne reason hath taught 
them, to pull off a Coat or two and set it up 
on a small pole, with which they will saile 
before a wind ten. or twenty mile &c. 



Obs: It is wonderfull to see how they will 
venture in those Canoes, and how (being oft 
overset as I have myselfe been with them) 
they will swim a mile, yea two or more safe 
to Land: I having been necessitated to passe 
Waters diverse times: with them, it hath 
pleased God to make them many times the 
instruments of my preservation, and when 
sometimes in great danger I have questioned 
safety, they have said to me: Feare not, if 
we he oversel I will carry you safe to Land. 1 



1 Collections of the Rhode Island Historical 
Society, vol. l. pp. 98-99, Providence, 1827. 



The New York Times for July 16, 
1906, writes: 

Cherry Hill was the centre of an excited 
crowd all day yesterday when the news gol 
about that some workmen had dug up an old 
Indian canoe in an excavation at the corner 
of ( 'heri'v and < (liver Street 3. 

Men, women, and hoys and girls flocked 
to the spot, and so blocked the streets thai 
the police of the Oak Street Station had to 
he sent there to keep order. 

The lower part of Oliver Street is made 
ground, for in the old days the waters of the 
Last River used to wash above the Cherry 
Street line. 

Workmen from the New York Edison Com- 
pany had made an excavation ahout eight 
Feel deep when they came to what seemed fco 
he a big Log near the bottom. They dug 
around this and disclosed to view what the 
police and all others who viewed it said was 
half of an Indian canoe. Then the workmen, 
who don't take much interest in anything 
pertaining to the American Indian, promptly 
got an axe and chopped away until they got 
out the timber in sight, leaving the other 
half still buried in the mud. 

In doing this they split the canoe into three 
pieces, and, followed by an admiring crowd. 
it was carried to the corner of Frankfort and 
Pearl Streets, and deposited on a pile of dirt 
under the Franklin Square elevated station, 
where the night watchman could keep his 
eye on it until to-day, when the workmen 
expect to gel the other half and piece the 
canoe together. 

It is supposed that the canoe was lying in 
the mud a hundred years ago or more, when 
the river front was filled in to make more land. 

The part saved is about 7feet long and 3 feel 
wide, and 14 inches deep, and tapers to an 
abrupt and rounded end, which is sharp, 
somewhat like the Indian canoes of the 'West- 
ern Indian. The whole was hewn from a 
solid log of white pine about fourteen feet 
long. 




Found at Cherry St., New York. 
Manhattan. 



PART OF DUGOUT CANOE. 

The only known fragment of a canoe used by the Indians of 



10 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



The Indian children, shortly after 
birth, were bound to a .stiff board, 
which served as a cradle, and there they 
were kept until they were able to walk 
and run about. This served the double 
purpose of making their backs straight 
and also of keeping them out of 
mischief. 

The religion of the Manhattan and 
their neighbors was a nature worship, 
pure and simple. They believed that 
there were deities who dwelt in the 
four quarters of the compass, that the 
sun and moon, the thunder and the 
winds were various supernatural 
beings. That these were all controlled 
by a supreme god whom they called 
' 'Kickeron," or ' 'Kickerom" was their 
conviction. They thought that the 
earth w T as populated by the descend- 
ants of a woman who fell from the sky 
and who would have been lost in the 
sea, save that a gigantic tortoise which 
afterwards became the earth, caught 
her on his back. They were also in 
fear of a terrible evil power, a horned 
snake, to whom they made sacrifices 
by burying objects in the ground in its 
name. 

The Manhattans and their neighbors 
also believed in a future existence, plac- 
ing their Elysian fields in the south- 
western skies, where they believed the 
souls of their dead journeyed. It was 
for this reason that they placed food 
and implements in their graves with 
the bodies, so that the wandering soul 
might lack nothing necessary to its 
comfort on the trip. 

The religion of the Indians was 
marked by periodic ceremonies, one of 
which has come down to the present 
day among the modern remnants of 
the Shinnecock of Long Island and the 
Mohegan of Connecticut. This is the 



"June Meeting," which was formerly 
a ceremony held for the green corn. 
The Delaware in Oklahoma and Canada 
still perform a number of other annual 
ceremonies. 

The old writers tell us that each 
Indian had some such name as ' 'Buck's 
Horn," "Wildcat," or "Rattlesnake," 
and that when he died it was con- 
sidered sacrilegious ever to mention 
his name again. It is also known 
that polygamy was practised by the 
local Indians. 

So much for the ethnology of the 
Manhattan and their neighbors. Let 
us now turn to their archaeology as set 
forth by the specimens on view in the 
entrance of the Woodland Hall. 

On entering the Eastern Wood- 
land Indian Hall the visitor will find 
that the first table sections are 
devoted to an exhibition, as com- 
prehensive as possible, showing the 
life of the natives in prehistoric 
times by means of specimens obtained 
from the ancient village and camp sites. 
Here may be seen bones of the various 
animals, fish and shell-fish upon which 
the Indians depended for subsistence; 
fragments of nuts, corn, roots and other 
food products preserved by charring 
and obtained from ancient fireplaces, 
and such implements as arrow points 
of antler and stone, net-sinkers of stone 
and stone hoes for tilling the field, all 
illustrative of primitive methods of 
hunting and agriculture. Implements 
exhibited in the same case show the 
preparation of animal and vegetable 
food with primitive utensils, while close 
by are tools used by the Indians in 
preparing skins. The manufactures of 
the Indians are illustrated in the 
immediately adjacent section. 

A progressive series of implements 




INWOOD ROCK-SHELTER. MANHATTAN. 




FINCH'S ROCK HOUSE. 



11 



12 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



shows the making of an arrow point 
from a simple quartz pebble such as 
might be picked up anywhere on the 
shore, with the various stage's leading 
to the finished point; the tools 
employed are also exhibited. Imple- 
ments of stone for pecking, grooving, 
and polishing; hatchets and axes; 
pottery fragments, and household 
utensils, such as hammers, axes, adzes 
and gouges, will be found at hand. 

In the upright cases there is an 
exhibit from Manhattan Island, made 
up of specimens principally collected 
by Messrs. Alexander C. ( nenoweth, 
W. L. Calver, and R. P. Bolton, in the 
rock-shelters and village sites at In- 
wood, showing as fully as possible the 
life of the prehistoric Manhattan 
Indians. 

In another table case are to be seen 
implements and remains from the 



methods of cutting bone and antler 
employed by these Indians. Bone 
was cut by notching or grooving it 
with a stone knife or flake, and then 
breaking it at the groove. Antler was 
worked in the same way, but it is very 
probable that the Indians boiled antler 
in order to make it more pliable and 
easily cut. 

P>om the appearance of pottery 
fragments now to be found on the sites 
of the ancient Indian villages of this 
vicinity and the methods of modern 
Indian pottery makers, v/e may safely 
conclude that most, if not all, of the 
earthenware manufactured in this 
locality was made by the coil process, 
which consisted of the following steps. 
The Indians first secured clay of a 
suitable quality, which was mixed with 
pounded shell or stones to make it 
tougher and more durable. It was 



?vt 



Tit 



' 1, ink ,\\//, ; ,.,M it ,,/ii » ■ «," iMuJkjt kmlh 



AsK-bed 



ur|ace 5oi I 

Shells ex ml 
black csr IK. 




DIAGRAM OF A TYPICAL SHELL DEPOSIT. 



shell-heaps marking a long-forgotten 
Indian village at Shinnecock Hills, 
Long Island. This exhibit, which is 
one of the most complete of its kind, 
gives a rather adequate picture of the 
ancient life of these people and is 
especially valuable for the number and 
variety of primitive manufactures 
shown. One of the most interesting of 
the sections demonstrates, by means of 
a series of specimens, the primitive 



then worked into long rolls, and the 
Indians, beginning at the bottom, 
worked the pot up by adding coil after 
coil, blending or smoothing the coils 
with a smooth stone until they did 
not show from either the interior or 
exterior surface. When the pot was 
completed, it was decorated by stamp- 
ing or incising designs about the 
exterior of the rim. 

The upright case at the end contains 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



13 



an exhibit from the remnants of the 

Algonkin and Iroquois Indians of New 
York State and New England, while 
a map showing the location of most of 
the Indian villages of Greater New 
York and vicinity and an actual section 
of a typical shell-heap, as well as 
photographs and labels describing the 
opening and excavation of the sites are 
near at hand. Specimens typical of 
those found in the shell-heap are also 
exhibited. 

Of all the traces left by the aborigines 
along the New York seacoast, the most 
abundant and familiar are the shell- 
heaps. These are beds of refuse mark- 



cultivation have generally made it level 
with its surroundings (Fig. 3). Very 

often, unless the land be plowed, no 
shells whatever show on the surface, 
and the only way of finding out the 
conditions of things below the sod is 
to test with a spade or a crowbar. If 
shells are present, their crunching soon 
gives notice of the fact. Sometimes 
shell-heaps have been located by shells 
thrown from animal burrows, or washed 
out by the rain, or in banks broken 
down by the surf. Some have been 
found fronting on the open Sound, 
but such cases are rare. These deposits 
consist of large quantities of decayed 




CROSS SECTION OF A SHELL PIT. 



ing the sites of ancient villages, camps 
and isolated wigwams. Wherever the 
fresh water joins the salt; especially 
where open water for fishing, and a 
spring for drinking come together in 
happy combination, there 1 is generally 
to be found some such evidence of 
Indian occupation. 

The typical "shell-heap" is not a 
heap at all, for leaf mold, the wash 
from neighboring high ground, and oft en 



oyster, clam, and other marine shells 
mixed with stained earth, with ashes, 
charcoal, and fire-cracked stones to 
mark the spots where ancient cam]) 
fires blazed. Among the shells are 
usually scattered antlers of deer, bones 
of animals, fishes, and birds, quantities 
of pottery fragments, and broken 
implements; in short, the imperishable 
part of the cam]) refuse left by the 
Indians. Now and then, perfed imple- 



14 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



merits and ornaments that had been 
carelessly lost in the rubbish or hidden 
for safe-keeping are discovered. 

Shell-heaps vary from a few inches 
to four feet in depth, and in area from 
a few square yards to several acres — 
all depending on the length of time the 
settlement was occupied and the 
number of dwellings comprising it. 
Deep shell-heaps are often divided into 



feet deej) by three feet wide. It is sup- 
posed that they were used as ovens or 
steaming holes and afterwards filled 
up with refuse. Some contain human 
skeletons, which may have been inter- 
red in them during the winter season 
when grave digging was impossible. 
These pits generally contain more of 
interest than the ordinary shell-heap. 
The closely packed regular masses of 




MAP GIVING THE LOCATIONS OF SHELL DEPOSITS. 
Those marked have been explored by the Museum. 



layers, the lowest of which are, of 
course, the oldest. Under and near 
most of these deposits may be found 
scattered "pits" or fire holes, which 
are bowl-shaped depressions in the 
ground filled with layers of 
stained earth, shells, and other refuse, 
with an occasional layer of ashes. 
Some pits are as large as ten feet wide 
by six feet deep, but the average is four 



shells form a covering which tends to 
preserve bone implements, charred 
corn, and such perishable articles from 
decay in a way that the looser shells of 
the general layers fail to do. 

Shell-heaps, while abundant along 
the seacoast, are seldom found inland, 
except on salt creeks or other streams 
having access to salt water. They 
may be seen all along the east shore of 



IXDI AXS OF MAXHATTAX I SLA XI) 



15 



the Hudson River at more or less 
frequent intervals as farupasPeekskill; 
on Croton Point and between Nyack 
and Hook Mountain on the west shore 
they attain considerable size. There 
are a few small deposits, however. 
composed mainly of fresh water clams 
(Unio) situated on fresh water lakes 
in the interior of Westchester County. 
There are many shell-heaps on Staten 



cemeteries of the Indians hold much of 
interest to the archaeologist. 

Although most of the natives in the 
vicinity of Greater New York did not 
place objects in the graves with their 
dead, some graves at Burial Ridge, 
Tottenville, Staten Island, when 
opened for the Museum in 1N ( .).">. were 
found to contain a great many interest- 
ing and valuable remains. With the 




INDIAN SKELETONS PIERCED BY ARROW POINTS, TOTTENVILLE, STATEN ISLAND. 



Island. Shell-heaps occur ordid occuron 
Constable Hook, New Jersey, and at 
intervals between there and Jersey ( 'it y 
along the western shore of New York 
Bay. The accompanying ma]) .nives 
the location of the important known 
shell deposits in the vicinity of New 
York City. 

Besides the shell-heaps, the ancient 



skeleton of a child there was a greal 

deposit of utensils, both finished and 
unfinished ornaments, such as beads, 
pendants, and the like, a stone pipe 
and a number of other objects, while 
not far away the skeletons of three 
Indian warriors were exhumed, in and 
among whose bones there were found, 
as shown in the cases devoted to the 





/•;■ 



^ 



*t 




1 %■■ ; 






11 



BONES PUNCTURED BY ARROW POINTS, FROM SKELETONS FOUND ON STATEN ISLAND. 



L6 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



17 



archaeology of Staten Island, twenty- 
three arrow points of stone, antler and 
bone. 

This is an exhibit which excellently 
indicates the use of the bow in Indian 
warfare. In tin 1 first skeleton, it was 
found that two arrow points of antler 
and one of bone had pierced the body 
and lodged near the spinal column. 
Another point of argillite had been 
driven between two ribs, cutting a 
notch in each. A bone arrow point had 
struck the shoulder and was resting 
against the scapula. Among the bones 
of the right hand, an arrow point of 
antler was discovered, and there was a 
similar one near the left hand. Another 
antler point was lying in the sand just 
beneath the body and had, no doubt, 
dropped from it when the flesh wasted 
away. The most interesting wound <>! 
all was one where an antler-tipped 
arrow had ploughed through one side 
of the body and fully one-third of the 
point had passed through one of the 
ribs, making a hole, in which it 
remained. Tin 1 second warrior was 
also terribly injured. The left femur 
showed an elongated puncture near the 
lower end, probably made by an arrow 
point. Among the ribs was the tip of 
an antler point, and another of yellow 
jasper was among the ribs on the 
left side of the body. Three other 
points were among the bones. The 
third skeleton was likewise an example 
of old-time bow play. There was an 
antler point among the ribs on the left 
side. The end of one of the fibula' was 
shattered by a stone arrow-head, and 
a second point had lodged between two 
ribs. Beneath the sternum was a 
flint point, and the right shoulder 
blade showed a fracture near the end, 
caused by a blow of some hand imple- 



ment or an arrow. Near the base of 
the skull, the end of an antler arrow- 
head was discovered, broken perhaps 
by its impact with the occiput. Two 
bone points were near the lower bones 
of the left leg. A second point was 
found upon search among the left 
ribs; under the vertebra' was the base 
of another antler point, and two 
broken points were found beneath the 
body. 

The positions in which several of the 
points were found certainly speaks well 
for the great force which propelled 
them. The long bows of the local 
Indians must indeed have been formid- 
able weapons. Taking into consider- 
ation the number of arrows which 
must have been imbedded in the 
bodies of the warriors, it is perhaps 
probable that the majority of the pro- 
jectiles were driven into the victims 
at close range after death. 

In a small square case will be found 
the model of a rock-shelter and 
typical objects found in such places. 
These rock-shelters, as the name im- 
plies, are protected spots in rocky 
ledges, which Indians once made more 
or less permanent places of abode. 
Many such shelters exist in the vicinity 
of New York, two or more having been 
discovered at Inwood, Manhattan. 
The most important rock-shelter so far 
discovered is the so-called Finch Rock 
House reproduced in a model. The 
original is near Armonk, Westchester 
County, New York. One point of 
special interest is the fact that the 
Finch shelter contained two layers 
bearing relics separated by sand as 
shown in the drawing. As no pottery 
was found in the bottom layer, it has 
been inferred that we have here the 
remains of two different races of 



1J 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



Indians, the older not yet advanced to 
the pottery-making stage. This con- 
clusion, is, however, far from final, for 
the whole arrangement may be due to 
accident. 

In the table cases opposite those 
devoted to the Algonkin some sections 
arc used to show the life history of the 
Iroquois tribes of western New York, 
and the following section shows, as 



well as possible, the culture of the 
Five Nations and objects used by the 
Indians of New York State obtained 
from European traders after the advent 
of the settlers. 

With the Iroquois exhibit is a special 
exhibit showing typical wampum 
beads, belts, and implements illustrat- 
ing the prehistoric manufacture of 
wampum on Long Island. 




VERTICAL SECTION OF REFUSE IN FINCH'S ROCK HOUSE, ABOUT MIDWAY OF THE CAVE. 



TYPES OF INDIAN RELICS FOUND IN AND ABOUT NEW YORK CITY. 



HAVING now taken a general 
view of the exhibit, the vis- 
itor may be interested in 
a study of the several kinds of 
relics found in this locality. As these 
types are somewhat unlike those 
found in near-by regions, we conclude 
that the Indians formerly living here 
had habits and customs different from 
those of their neighbors. For want of 
a better name, these long-extinct 
tribes have been called collectively 
the New York Coastal Algonkin. The 
term Algonkin designates the language 
they spoke, while the adjectives define 
their habitat. 

Under the designation New York 
Coastal Algonkin, the writer includes 
the tribes along the coast from Totten- 



ville, Staten Island, the extreme sou- 
thern point of the state, to the Connec- 
ticut boundary on Long Island Sound, 
including to a certain extent the shores 
of New Jersey immediately adjacent 
to Staten and Manhattan Islands, the 
east bank of the Hudson River as far 
north as Yonkers, and exclusive of 
Long Island except the western end. 
From the examination of the remains 
of the New York Coastal Algonkin area 
preserved in many collections, both 
public and private, it becomes obvious 
that the objects found may be roughly 
divided into three groups: articles of 
stone, articles of bone and antler, and 
articles of clay, shell, and metal. The 
first group is, from the imperishable 
nature of its representatives, naturally 



itkXAJkh 



kAkkkkiU 

1^ ^ 1Q> IT IB 





33 31- 35 . . - 3g 






/ i_ ,- o. 11 C C to /S CX n w * 



4* 




5 7 



59 vi 63 64 



65" 



TYPES OF ARROW POINTS. 

19 



20 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



the largest and comprises a number of 
sub-groups to be briefly described and 
commented upon in this paper. 
Examples of this type will be found in 
the table cases previously mentioned. 
For the following descriptions and 
historical notes the author has largely 
drawn on Mr. James K. Finch's and 
his own contributions to Volume III 
of the "Anthropological Papers of the 
American Museum of Natural His- 
tory" (New York, 1909). 

Chipped Articles. 

Arrow Points. Two general types 
of arrow points may be recognized: 
these are the stemmed or notched, and 
the triangular forms. The former are 
by far the most abundant, and while 
these are usually made of the nearest 
local rock possessing the necessary 
conchoidal fracture, in some cases they 
are of material brought from a long 
distance. Specimens made of pink 
flint resembling stone from the Flint 
Ridge of Ohio, and of jasper found 
to the south of this region have been 
recorded. Blunt arrow points are 
rare, the Indians probably preferring 
wooden arrows for this type. Many of 
the so-called "blunt points" found in 
collections appear to be scrapers made 
over from broken arrow points of a 
large size. 

The triangular type has long been 
regarded by the local collectors of this 
vicinity as being the type used in war, 
the argument being that as it has no 
stem, it was necessarily but loosely 
fastened in its shaft and, if shot into 
the body, would be very liable to be- 
come detached and remain in the flesh 
if any attempt were made to withdraw 
it by tugging at the shaft. While it 
was no doubt perfectly possible to 



fasten a point of triangular shape to 
the shaft as firmly as a notched point, 
the discoveries of Mr. George H. 
Pepper at Tottenville, Staten Island, 
where twenty-three arrow points were 
found in and among the bones of three 
Indian skeletons, tend to strength this 
theory. While the majority of points 
found there were of bone or antler, all 
those made of stone were of this type; 
indeed, most of the bone points were 
also triangular in shape. However, 
it is well to bear in mind that arrow 
points of triangular type were used for 
every purpose by all the early Iroquois 
tribes of New York. 

Spear Points and Knives. None of 
the early accounts of contemporary 
European writers seem to mention the 
use of spears (other than bone or antler- 
headed harpoons) by the Indians here- 
abouts, and it is probable that the 
larger arrow-point like forms found 
were used as knives or cutting tools. 
They are usually notched or stemmed, 
rarely triangular, and occasionally 
round or oval. They vary in size, but 
it must be remembered that one tool 
may have had various uses, and that 
drills, knives and scrapers may often 
have been combined in one implement. 

Scrapers. Scrapers were probably 
used in dressing skins, in sharpening 
bone implements, wood-working, and 
for various other purposes. These are 
usually mere flint flakes chipped to an 
edge on one side. Nevertheless, 
notched and stemmed forms requir- 
ing some care in their making do occur. 
Broken arrow points were occasionally 
chipped down to serve this purpose. 
A single serrated scraper has been 
found. These are very rare in both 
the Algonkian and Iroquoian areas of 
New England and the Middle Atlantic 




KNIVES AND SCRAPERS 



21 



22 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



States. One very large stemmed 
scraper, of a type more common in the 
far west, also comes from this locality. 
Drills. These are usually chipped 
tools presenting an elongated narrow 
blade and a considerably swollen or 
expanded base, suitable for grasping 
in the hand. In some cases the base 
was absent and those were probably 
hafted in wood. Specimens whose 
blades have a square or rectangular 
cross-section are very rare. The find- 
ing of cores left in half-drilled objects 
shows the use of a hollow drill, and it 
has been suggested that a hard hollow 
reed used with sand and water on a 
soft stone would produce this effect. 
To bear out this assertion, it has been 
reported that a half-drilled implement 
has been found outside this area on the 
upper Hudson in which the remains of 
the reed drill were found in the cavity 
left by its action. 

Rough Stone Articles. 

Hammer stones. These vary from 
simple pebbles picked up and used in 
the rough, showing merely a battered 
edge or edges acquired by use, to the 
pitted forms. They are generally mere 
pebbles with a pit pecked on two 
opposite sides, perhaps to aid in grasp- 
ing with the thumb and forefinger. 
Some have battered edges, but many 
have not, suggesting, when round and 
regular, a use as gaming or "Chunke" 
stones, or as implements used only in 
pounding some rather soft substance. 
Hammerstones, pitted on one side only, 
and others with many pits on all sides, 
occur. These latter may have had some 
special use, and are not to be con- 
founded with the large flat, slab-like 
stones having pits only on one side, 
found in other regions, and perhaps 



used as receptacles for holding nuts 
while cracking them. While these are 
common in the Iroquoian area, they 
are unknown here. 

Large stones, single or double- 
pitted, resembling over-sized hammer- 
stones occur. These may have been 
used as anvils in chipping flint or for 
like purposes. 

Grooved clubs or mauls, also showing 
use as hammers are found. These are 
rare and are usually either rough 
pebbles, grooved for hafting, as in the 
case of the grooved axe, or grooved 
axes, the blades of which have become 
so battered, broken, and rounded by 
wear as to preclude their further use 
for chopping. 

Net-sinkers. On all sites near the 
water, either salt or fresh, net-sinkers 
show the prevalence of fishing. These 
are of two types. In one case a pebble 
is notched on opposite sides of either 
the long or broad axis; in the other, a 
groove is pecked around the entire 
pebble in the same manner. The latter 
type is comparatively scarce, as the 
former, being more easily and quickly 
made, was just as useful to the savage. 
The modern Cree and Ojibway, resid- 
ing in the forests north of the Great 
Lakes, still use pebbles for this purpose, 
but those observed by the writer were 
not notched or worked in any way. 
Occasionally, sinkers notched on both 
axes are found in this region. 

Hoes. These are usually ovoid 
implements, chipped from trap rock, 
sometimes notched to facilitate haft- 
ing, and sometimes not. They usually 
show a slight polish on the blade, 
caused by friction with the ground. 
This type of stone hoe is the form 
mentioned by early writers; but per- 
haps hoes of shell, bone, or tortoise 



f tft 




DRILLS, SCRAPERS AND OTHER OBJECTS. 



24 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



shell, and wood were used also. None 
of these, however, are still in existence. 

Hand Choppers. Pebbles chipped to 
an edge on one side, for use as hand 
choppers, occur. These are occasionally 
pitted on both sides. 

Grooved Axes. For the purposes of 
this paper, the writer, while aware that 
many grooved axes are well made and 
polished, has decided to include them 
under the head of ' 'Rough Stone 
Articles," as by far the greater majority 
of the grooved axes and celts from this 
region lack the polish and finish belong- 
ing to other articles later to be described. 
Grooved axes are of two sorts: a, those 
made of simple pebbles, merely modi- 
fied by grooving and chipping or peck- 
ing an edge; and b, axes which have 
been pecked and worked all over and 
sometimes polished. The latter (b) may 
be said to include : 

1. Groove encircling three sides of 
blade, one side flat. 

2. Ridged groove encircling three 
sides of blade, one side flat. 

3. Groove encircling three sides of 
blade, longitudinal groove on flat side. 

4. Groove encircling three sides of 
blade, longitudinal groove on flat side 
and opposite. 

5. Groove encircling blade. 

6. Ridged groove encircling blade. 
A seventh type, having a double 

groove encircling the blade, may occur 
in this territory, but has never been 
reported. A specimen from the Hudson 
River region, just north of the area 
here dwelt upon, is in the Henry Booth 
Collection in this Museum. While most 
worked stone axes have been pecked 
into shape, a few have been fashioned 
by chipping, but these seem to be rare. 
Grooved axes were hafted in various 
ways. During the summer of 1908, 



the Eastern Cree living in the vicinity 
of the southern end of Hudson Bay 
told the writer that their ancestors, 
who made and used such axes, hafted 
them by splitting a stick and setting 
the blade in it, then binding the handle 
together with deerskin (probably raw- 
hide) above and below the split. No 
specimens of the grooved axe in the 
original haft seem now to be extant 
from any locality in the East. From 
the battered appearance of the butts 
of these axes, it may have been that 
they were sometimes used in lieu of 
mauls or hammers. It is possible that 
they may have been used in war. It 
is generally supposed that in cutting 
down trees, making dug-out canoes and 
other kinds of wood-working, fire was 
used as an adjunct to the stone axe, 
the former being the active agent. The 
process of burning and charring having 
gone on sufficiently, the stone axe was 
used to remove the burned portion. 
However, some stone axes seem sharp 
enough to cut quite well without the 
aid of fire. 

Celts. Ungrooved axes or hatchets, 
usually called celts, are frequent 
throughout this area; but are nowhere 
as abundant as the grooved axe, 
especially near the southern border of 
the region. The grooved axe seems to 
have been the typical cutting and chop- 
ping tool of the local Algonkin. The 
widespread idea that the celt was some- 
times used unhafted as a skinning tool, 
has no historic proof, but may possibly 
have some foundation. The Cree of the 
southern Hudson Bay region use an 
edged tool of bone for this purpose, a 
fact which is somewhat suggestive, 
although the implement differs in shape 
from the celt. Celts with one side flat 
and the other beveled to an edge may 




TYPES OF STONE AXES AND CELTS. 



25 



26 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



have been used as adzes. From the 
worn and hammered appearance of the 
polls of some celts, it is possible that 
many of these implements were used 
as wedges in splitting wood, after 
constant manipulation in their chop- 
ping capacity had permanently dulled 
their edges. 

The celts of this region are, as a 
general thing, poorly made, a pebble of 
suitable shape having an edge ground 



broader than the butt, although some 
exceptions have been found. The 
forms are as follows: a, rough stone 
celts, pebbles with one end ground to 
an edge, but otherwise scarcely worked; 
and b, worked stone celts, which 
include the following : 

1. Wedge-shaped, poll narrower 

than bit, and angles rounded. 
Common. 

2. Like number one, but with bit 




HAFTED CELT FROM A POND AT THORNDALE, DUTCHESS CO., N. Y. 

Length of celt 16.6 cm. 



on it with little or no preliminary shap- 
ing. More rarely, however, they were 
carefully worked all over by pecking 
and polishing, as in the case of the 
grooved axe. 

In type, aside from the general 
division of rough and worked celts, we 
may add that most celts in this region 
have slightly rounded polls, the bit 



4. 



much broader than poll. Cross- 
section oval. Very rare. 
Like number one, but one side 
flat, other beveled at one end to 
make a cutting edge. 
Like number two, but with cut- 
ting edge flaring, broader than 
body. "Bell-mouthed type." 
Very rare. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



27 



North and west of this region, we 
find the Iroquois territory where most 
worked celts are angular, having almost 
invariably a rectangular cross-section 
and squared butt. Types 1 and 3 also 
occur, but the celt with the rectangular 
cross-section seems most typical oi the 
Iroquoian region. Many small celts, 
made of flat fragments or chips oi 
stone, are also found in this area, and 
these could scarcely have had a use as 
chopping tools. 

In the Niagara watershed and 
extending eastward as far as the 
Genesee Valley, an angular adze-like 
form having a trapezoidal cross-section 
occurs. It is found principally in what 
was the territory of the Attiwandaronk, 
Kah-Kwah, or Neutral Nation (an 
Iroquoian tribe, early annihilated by the 
Five Nations). It also occurs, as has 
been stated, on the sites of villages of 
the Iroquois proper, but is not abund- 
ant. South of the Iroquois in Central 
Pennsylvania, another form which does 
not occur in this region is the chipped 
celt, visually of flint or other hard stone. 
This form is, however, frequent in the 
country about the headwaters of the 
Delaware. 

In the "American Anthropologist," 
Vol. 9, No. 2, p. 296 et seq., Mr. C. C. 
Willoughby has figured and described 
the celts of the New England region 
with remarks on the methods of haftiug 
employed. These seem to be two in 
number, and consist, in the case of the 
larger forms, of setting the blade 
through a hole in the end of a club-like 
handle, the butt or poll projecting on 
one side and the blade on the other as 
in one which was found in the muck of a 
pond bottom at Thorndale, Dutchess 
County, New York, a region once in 
the Mahican territory. Smaller celts 



were set into a club-like handle, the 
butt resting in a hole or socket. 

Adzes. These seem to be of two 
kinds, the first and most simple being 
celt-like, but flat on one side, the other 
side being beveled to an edge on one 
side. The second form differs in hav- 
ing a groove, which is not infrequently 
ridged. Occasionally, adzes with two 
parallel grooves occur. They were 
probably hatted by taking a stick at 
one end of which projected a short arm 
at right angles with the shaft, laying 
the flat side of the blade against this 
arm and binding it on with sinew, 
thongs, or withes. The groove, of 
course, was of aid in securing the blade 
to the handle. Adzes of stone, hatted 
in this manner, have been obtained on 
the North Pacific Coast. The celt 
adze seems not uncommon, but the 
grooved adze is rare, neither form 
being nearly so abundant as in the New 
England region. 

Gouges. The stone gouge is rare, 
and seems always to be a plain, single- 
bladed affair without the transverse 
grooves so frequently seen in New 
England specimens, and hereabouts is 
always easily distinguished from the 
adze. Less than half a dozen specimens 
have been seen by the writer from this 
entire area, although probably quite 
as much work in wood was done by the 
New York Coastal Algonkin as by the 
New England Indians. 

Pestles. The long pestle occurs 
throughout the region of the Coastal 
Algonkin of New York, but is nowhere 
as abundant as in New England. 
They seem always to have been used 
with the wooden block mortar here- 
abouts, and are mentioned by the early 
writers as part of the household equip- 
ment of the natives. They do not seem 



28 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



to have been used by the Iroquois to 
the north and west of this area either 
in early or later times. The wooden 
pestle of dumb-bell shape seems to 
have been preferred by them. The 
latter is used by the Canadian Dela- 
ware and may have taken the place of 
the long stone pestle to a great extent 
in this region. 

Midlers, Grinders, and Polishing 
Stones. These are frequent, and consist 
merely of rounded pebbles, shaped and 
worn by use, probably most often in 
crushing corn. They are mentioned by 
De Vries as being used by the Indians 
with a flat stone slab for grinding corn 
when traveling. Some seem to have 
been used for polishing stone imple- 
ments, but it seems hard to draw the 
line, as the appearance gained from 
friction would be quite similar. Such 
mullers and their attendant slabs, 
used for preparing corn meal have 
within a few years been collected in 
use among the Oneida Iroquois of New 
York, one specimen being in the Ameri- 
can Museum collection. 

Sinew Stories. These are pebbles 
showing grooves along the edges, 
popularly supposed to have been worn 
there by rubbing thongs and sinews 
across the edges to shape them. They 
occur generally, but are not common. 

Stone Mortars. These are common, 
but rather local, some sites having none 
at all, and others a good many. One 
locality on Staten Island is notable for 
the numbers found there, whereas they 
are rare elsewhere in that vicinity. 
They may be divided into the following 
types : 

1 . Portable mortar, hole on one 
side. 

2. Portable mortar, hole on both 
sides (New Jersey type). 



3. Portable slab mortar or metate, 
used on one or both sides. 

4. Boulder mortar, one or more 
holes, immovable. 

The first two types are the most 
abundant, the third is not uncommon, 
but the fourth is very rare, only one or 
two being reported. As above stated, 
De Vries claims that the portable 
mortars were used in bread-making 
while the Indians were traveling, but 
certainly the majority of those found 
are far too heavy for this purpose. 

Pigments and Paint Cups. Frag- 
ments of pigments such as graphite 
and limonite, showing the marks of 
scratching with scrapers, are found, 
which have apparently supplied the 
material for painting. Worked geodes 
are common on many sites. These 
show traces of chipping in some in- 
stances and may have been paint cups. 
There is a tiny pestle-shaped pebble in 
the Museum collection from West- 
chester County, which is said to have 
been found with a geode of this type. 
The popular theory is that such geodes 
were used as "paint cups" and this 
seems probable. 

Stone Plummets. These are very 
rare, in contrast to their abundance in 
the New England region. They consist 
usually of small worked egg-shaped 
stones, grooved at one end, probably 
for suspension. The writer has seen 
but one from this area. Their use is 
problematic. 

Semilunar Knives. Knives of rubbed 
slate, similar in appearance to the ulu, 
or woman's knife of the Eskimo, are 
found, though rarely, in this region. 
While sometimes ascribed to Eskimo 
influence or contact, it is possible that 
this form (which occurs throughout New 
England), judging by its distribution, 




BANNER STONES, GORGETS, AND AMULETS. 



30 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



may have been native to the Eastern 
Algonkin also. The Eastern Cree still 
use knives of this type as scrapers. 
Like most other forms common in New 
England, it is less abundant in the 
southern part of this area. 

Stone Beads. Various pebbles gen- 
erally perforated naturally are to be 
found on some sites, and may or may 
not have been used as beads or pend- 
ants. On St at en Island, at Watchogue, 
Mr. Isaiah Merrill once owned a 
number of square beads of pinkish 
steatite (?), all but one of which have 
been lost, and which he claims were 
found on his farm. 

Gorgets. Two types of the gorget 
occur. These are the single-holed 
pendant form, which is the less abund- 
ant of the two, and the double-holed 
type. The latter is flat, rectangular in 
shape, and generally well polished. It 
usually has two perforations a short 
distance from the middle. The modern 
Lenape of Canada claim to have used 
these as hair ornaments. Probably the 
two-holed variety is typical of the 
Algonkian peoples of this region, the 
single-holed form, on the other hand, 
is the most abundant on old Iroquoian 
sites. Specimens of the latter have been 
obtained in use among the Canadian 
Iroquois, and some of them are in the 
Museum collections. 

Amulets. Certain problematic ar- 
ticles of the "bar" and even "bird 
amulet" type have been found, but 
these are probably exotic in origin and 
are not characteristic of the archae- 
ology of the region in question. 

Bonner Stones. These beautiful pol- 
ished stone implements of unknown use 
may be divided into three great classes, 
with several sub-types as follows: 

1. Notched banner stones. 



2. Grooved banner stones. 

a. Groove on both sides. 

b. Groove on one side. 

3. Perforated banner stones. 

a. Plain. 

b. Butterfly. 

All three types seem equally abund- 
ant, but the notched banner stones 
appear to be the oldest form and occur 
under circumstances pointing to great 
relative antiquity. They are found, 
however, on the more recent sites as 
well . Both th e notched and the grooved 
banner stones are usually more rough 
in appearance than the perforated 
type, and the writer has never seen a 
polished specimen of the first class. On 
the other hand, the grooved variety 
frequently exhibits the high degree of 
finish characteristic of the perforated 
forms. Banner stones grooved only on 
one side are less common than the 
other forms. While the latter class is 
generally made of slate, steatite, or 
some similar soft and easily worked 
material, the notched and grooved 
forms, especially the former, are often 
formed either from naturally-shaped 
pebbles or chipped roughly into shape. 
Implements, usually naturally-shaped 
stones with little working, without 
notches, grooves or perforations, but 
greatly resembling the notched and 
grooved banner stones in shape, are not 
infrequently found on aboriginal sites 
hereabouts and may have served as 
banner stones. There seem to be 
neither records nor plausible theories 
as to their use. 

Pipes. Stone pipes, invariably 
made of steatite, are very rare. Four 
types have been noted as follows :- 

1. Monitor or platform pipe, plat- 
form not projecting before the 
1 >o wl . 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



31 



2. Monitor or platform pipe, plat- 

form projecting before bowl, 
with or without tiny carved 
stem or mouthpiece. Of the 
latter, one specimen is known. 

3. Trumpet-shaped stone pipe. 

4. Rectangular stone pipe, human 
face carved on front of bowl. 

It may be remarked that more stone 
pipes have been reported from the Indian 
cemetery at Burial Ridge, Tottenville, 
Stat en Island, than from all the rest of 
the area put together. The second 
and third types are represented by one 
specimen each from Burial Ridge and 
from nowhere else in this region. Four 
or five pipes of the first class have been 
found there as well. The last class is 
represented by a single specimen ob- 
tained by Mr. W. L. Calver at Inwood, 
Manhattan Island. Undoubtedly the 
clay pipe was the most common form 
used in this locality. 

Steatite Vessel*. These are not at 
all abundant, though occurring almost 
everywhere. They were doubtless all 
imported from New England, as there 
are no steatite quarries within the range 
of the New York Coastal Algonkin. 
The single form found is that common 
in the east, an oblong, fairly deep vessel 
with a lug, ear, or handle at each end. 
Occasionally, such vessels are orna- 
mented by rude incisions along the rim. 

Articles of ('lay. 

Pottery Pipes are common every- 
where. They are usually manufac- 
tured of a better quality of clay than 
that used for vessels, and bear fairly 
similar designs. They are susceptible 
of division into the following classes: 

1. Straight pipe, bowl expanding 

slightly. 

2. Bowl much larger than stem. 



leaving it at an angle of forty- 
five degrees. Stem round. 

3. Same as number 2, hut stem 

angular and much flattened. 

4. Effigy pipes, (represented by a 
pottery human head apparently 
broken from a pipe howl, 
obtained by Air. M. R. Harr- 
ington at Port Washington, 
Long Island). 

The straight pipe seems to have 
been obtained only on Staten Island 
on the north shore in the region occu- 
pied by the Hackensack. While no- 
where as abundant as upon the Iro- 
quoian sites of central and western 
New York, the clay pipe is rather 
common and is a prominent feature 
in the coast culture of New York. 
It is more abundant perhaps in the 
southern part of the area, but this 
may well be due to the fact that data 
from this region are more easily 
accessible. The triangular-stemmed 
"trumpet" pipe so common on the 
Iroquoian sites is unknown in this 
region. 

Pottery Yessels. 

The pottery of this region may all 
be considered as being either the 
native Algonkian in type or showing 
Iroquoian influence with a third and 
intermediate variety. Algonkian ves- 
sels may be divided into the following 
groups according to shape: 

1. Conical, pointed bottom, slight- 

ly swollen sides, circumference 
largest at the mouth, — the 
typical Algonkian pot of this 
area. Fig. a. 

2. Like number 1, but much 

rounder and broader, Fig. b. 

3. Bottom pointed, sides slightly 



32 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



swollen, neck slightly constric- 
ted, Fig. c. 

4. Identical with number 2, except 
that just below the beginning 
of the neck, occur small raised 
lugs, ears or handles. This is 
rare from this area, Fig. d. 

5. Rounded bottom, somewhat 

constricted neck, lip sometimes 
flaring, or even turning down 
and back, Fig. e. 
The intermediate types are as 
follows : 

6. Rounded bottom, constricted 

neck, narrow raised rim or 
collar, Fig. f. 

7. Like number 6, but with sides 
more elongated and bottom 
more oval than round, heavier 
collar, generally notched angle, 
with or without a series of small 
humps or projections at inter- 
vals, Fig. g. 

The Iroquoian types are as follows: 

8. Mouth rounded, collar or rim 

heavy, with humps or peaks at 
intervals, angle notched, neck 
constricted and bottom round- 
ed; can stand by itself, an 
unknown feature in local Al- 
gonkian vessels, Fig. h. 

9. Same as number 7, but with 

mouth square, and humps at 
every angle. Much less com- 
mon than the preceding, Fig. i. 
In size, the vessels range from small 
toy-like pots to jars of very large capa- 
city. In general they appear to have 
been made by the coil process, and are 
tempered with pounded stone or fine 
gravel, mica or burned or pounded 
shell. Sherds showing tempering by 
fiber or some other substance that dis- 
appeared in firing are found rarely. 
When vessels were cracked or broken, 



a series of holes was bored opposite 
each other on either side of the break 
and the parts laced together, render- 
ing the vessel capable of storing dry 
objects, at least. 

Life forms are exceedingly rare in 
local ceramic art. From Manhattan 
Island and Van Cortlandt Park, there 
come a number of specimens showing 
incised human (?) faces. This is not 
an uncommon form on Iroquoian sites 
in Central and Western New York. 
On the Bowman's Brook site at Mar- 
iner's Harbor, Stat en Island, frag- 
ments of a typically Algonkian pot 
were obtained which bore at inter- 
vals, rude raised faces. With the 
sole exception of a rather well-modeled 
clay face, apparently broken from the 
bowl of a pipe found at Port Wash- 
ington, Long Island, by Mr. M. R. 
Harrington, this brief statement con- 
cludes the list of pottery life forms 
reported from this area, although others 
may yet be found here, since some inter- 
esting objects have been collected in 
immediately adjacent territory. 

The forms of decoration consist of 
stamping with a stamp, roulette, or 
paddle, and incising. Occasionally, 
but very rarely, stucco work occurs. 
Under stamping we can enumerate the 
following processes :- 

1. Impression with the rounded 
end of a stick (rare). 

2. Impression with the end of a 
quill, or hollow reed, leaving a 
circular depression with a tiny 
lump or nipple (rare) in the 
center. 

3. Impression with a section of a 

hollow reed, making a stamped 
circle (rare). 

4. Impression with finger nail 

(doubtful, but perhaps used on 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



33 



some sherds from Manhattan 
Island). 

5. Impression of the edge of a 
scallop shell. 

6. Impression with a carved bone, 

antler, or wooden stamp. 

7. Impression of a cord-wrapped 

stick. 

8. Impression with roulette. 



finish the sides and bottom of the pot 

by imparting an appearance of pressure 

with fabric when the clay was wet. 

11. Stucco. Occasionally, ridges 

of clay placed on the rim for 

ornament appear to have been 

added after the shaping of the 

vessel. 

Ornamentation is usually external, 




POTTERY FORMS OF THE COASTAL ALGONKIN. 



Under of the head of decoration by 
incision we can enumerate the follow- 



ing: 

9 



Incised decoration, probably 
made with a stick. 

10. Incised decoration, possibly 
made with a flint object (only 
one specimen at hand). 

The paddle was frequently used to 



and vessels, either Algonkian or Iro- 
quoian, are rarely ornamented below 
the rim, although occasionally the 
designs run part way down the side 
in the case of the Algonkian forms. 
Where decoration has been applied by 
one of the stamping processes, and 
more rarely by incision, it is sometimes 
continued over the lip or rim for an 



34 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



inch or less on the inside. This only 
occurs in the typical Algonkian forms, 
and is never seen when incised orna- 
mentation is used. The rims of Iro- 
quoian vessels are never ornamented 
on the interior, nor is stamping so fre- 
quently practised on vessels of this 
class. The intermediate forms, at 
least the first of the two mentioned, are 
frequently ornamented on the inter- 
ior of the lip. This internal decoration 
is much more common in the southern 



patterns are the most common, but 
other angular forms occur, and rows 
of parallel lines encircling the vessel 
are sometimes to be found. Stamping 
and incision as decorative processes 
never seem to occur on the same vessel. 
Curvilinear decoration is exceedingly 
rare, and not enough material is at 
hand to show that patterns were used, 
possibly these were scrolls of some 
form. On account of the lack of mate- 
rial, it cannot be determined whether the 





TYPICAL ALGONKIAN POTTERY PIPE AND FRAGMENT OF AN EFFIGY PIPE FROM PORT WASHINGTON, L. I, 



portion of this area than elsewhere in 
the vicinity. 

In design, we must of course, give 
up all thought of trying to obtain sym- 
bolism, if such there were, for there are 
are no sources now left upon which to 
base our assumptions. Certain con- 
ventional types of decoration seem to 
have been in vogue, usually consisting 
in rows of stamped or incised parallel 
lines and much more rarely of dots 
regularly arranged in the same manner. 
Zigzag, chevron, and "herring bone" 



designs on the Algonkian vessels differ 
from those on the Iroquoian, except in 
a very general and unsatisfactory way. 
The angle formed where the heavy 
rim or collar leaves the constricted 
neck of the Iroquoian vessel is almost 
invariably notched, and as such collars 
and angles do not occur on vessels of 
the true Algonkian type, this feature 
is necessarily absent from them. It 
is noticeable that Iroquoian vessels 
are usually decorated with incised 
designs, rather than stamped patterns. 







y- 



INCISED DESIGNS FROM ALGONKIAN VESSELS. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



35 




// // s / 



///'///// /// '/" 



vessel 



INCISED DESIGNS FROM POTTERY VESSELS. 
a b and d. designs from [roquoian vessels: c and e, design from an AJgonkian vessel; /.design from a 
el of the [roquoian type from a Connecticut rock-shelter, introduced here for comparison. 



36 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



Pottery is found abundantly on the 
majority of the sites in this district; 
but, while very much more common 
than in the New England area, it does 
not equal in abundance that from the 
Iroquois country. It is rarely found 
buried in graves with skeletons as in 
the Iroquoian area; when sometimes 
found in graves, however, it is usually 
at some distance from the human re- 
mains and apparently not connected 
with them. Whole or nearly whole 
vessels are exceedingly rare and the 
number of those found up to date 
may easily be counted upon the fingers. 
Potsherds taken from pits or shell- 
heaps, where they have not been ex- 
posed to the action of the weather, 
are often as thickly covered with grease 
as when they were broken and cast 
aside. 

Articles of Metal. 

Beads. Beads of native metal, con- 
sisting simply of pieces of hammered 
sheet copper rolled into small tubes, 
have been found, but they are very 
rare. Copper salts, but no objects, 
were found upon the bones, especially 
on those of the head and neck of a 
child's skeleton at Burial Ridge, Tot- 
tenville, Staten Island, which seemed 
to predicate the use of copper beads. 
A great many beads of olivella shell, 
some of them discolored by copper 
salts, were found about the neck of the 
skeleton. A single celt of copper is 
said to have been found in Westchester 
County, probably on Croton Neck, 
slightly above the limit of the territory 
treated in this paper. ] A large number 



1 Native copper occurs in the New Jersey trap 
ridges, within a few miles of New York City, an 
important source in Colonial times being near 
Boundbrook 30 miles from the lower end of Man- 
hattan Island. Bowlders of native copper occur 
in the glacial drift. 



of copper beads of the type described, 
were found with a skeleton on Con- 
stable Hook, Bayonne, New Jersey, 
and are now in the hands of a private 
collector in Brooklyn. 

Articles of Shell. 

Wampum. Objects of shell are not 
at all common, and notwithstanding 
the coast region of New York was one 
of the best known localities for wam- 
pum manufacture on the continent. 
Wampum beads are almost unknown 
from local sites. With the exception 
of completed beads, most of which may 
have been taken into the interior, by 
the Indians, wampum may be found 
in all stages of manufacture. We refer 
to the white wampum, for traces of 
the "black" (blue) wampum made 
from the hard clam or quahog are so 
far not reported. The process of man- 
ufacture may be shown by shells with the 
outer whorls broken away in steps until 
the innermost solid column is reached, 
ground and polished at the end, and 
needing only cutting off into sections 
and perforations to make the finished 
white wampum bead. These do not 
occur on all sites, though they have 
been found here and there throughout 
the region. Ninety-six conch shells 
with the outer whorls broken entirely 
away were found in a grave at Burial 
Ridge, Tottenville, Staten Island, about 
the head and neck of a skeleton. 

Pendants. Occasionally oyster and 
clam shells, found unworked save for 
perforations in them, may have been 
pendants or ornaments, but certainly 
have little aesthetic value. 

Scrapers. Clam shells seem to 
have been used as scrapers and some 
are occasionally found with one edge 
showing the effect of rubbing and wear- 



I X 1)1 AX S OF MAX 1 1 ATT AX I SLA XI) 



37 



ing. These are rare, however. Some 
may have been pottery smoothers. 
Clam shells have been reported which 
contained central perforations and 
were identical in appearance with some 
shell pottery scrapers and smoothers 
collected by Mr. M. R. Harrington 
among the Catawba. Contemporary 
writers mention the use of knives made 
of shell. 

Pottery Tempering. This was some- 
times done with calcined and pounded 
shells, but was uncommon, considering 
the abundance of the material at hand. 
Pounded stone or gravel seems to have 
been more favored. 

Pottery Stamps. The corrugated 
edge of a scallop shell was frequently 
used as a stamp for pottery, as may be 
seen by examining the potsherds from 
this region. 

Articles of Bone and Antler. 

Objects of bone and antler, while 
perhaps more abundant here than in 
New England, are far less plentiful in 
form and number thaninthe Iroquoian 
area. Cut bones are frequent in most 
shell pits and heaps. They were cut 
probably with a flint knife, by grooving 
the bone partly through on all sides, 
and breaking. 

Bone Awls. These utensils are the 
most common of all bone articles in 
this region and are found in almost 
every part of the area. Some are mere- 
ly sharpened slivers, but others show 
a considerable degree of work, and are 
well finished and polished. They are 
usually made of deer or other mammal 
bone, but sometimes from the leg bones 
of birds. 

In some instances, the joint of the 
bone is left for a handle, but this is 
often cut off. Grooved, perforated or 



decorated bone awls are extremely rare 
in this region. While it is generally 
considered that these bone tools were 
used as awls in sewing leather, as 
by modern shoemakers, neverthe- 
less, they may have served as forks in 
removing hot morsels from the pot or 
for a number of other purposes. The 
latter supposition is supported by the 
abundance of bone awls found in some 
shell pits. The Eastern Cree of the 
Hudson Bay region use a similar bone 
implement as the catching or striking 
pin in the cup-and-ball game. 

Bone Needles. These are rare, but 
found in most localities. They are 
generally made of the curved ribs of 
mammals and are six or eight inches 
long, or even longer. They are gener- 
ally broken across the eye, which is 
usually midway between the ends. A 
few with the perforation at one end 
have been reported. 

Bone Arrow Points, usually hollow 
and conical in shape, have been found, 
especially at Tottenville, Staten 
Island, in the Burial Ridge. They 
are rather rare, but this may be due 
to the fact that conditions are not 
suitable for their preservation in mosl 
localities. Others are flat and triang- 
ular in shape. 

Harpoons. No actual barbed bone 
harpoons, such as occur in the Iroquois 
country have been reported from this 
region; although the writer has seen 
what appeared to be part of one from 
Shinnecock Hills, Long Island, whence 
comes a harpoon barb of bone, found 
by the writer, now in the Museum 
collection which was apparently made 
to tie to a wooden shaft. While 
neither of these forms seems to occur 
within this region, several naturally 
barbed spines from the tail of the sting- 



38 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



ray, found on the Bowman's Brook 
site, at Mariner's Harbor, Staten 
Island, may have been used as har- 
poons or fish spears, for which purpose 
they were admirably suited by nature. 
Long, narrow, chipped stone arrow- 
heads are generally called ' 'fish points " 
but they do not seem peculiarly adapt- 
ed for this purpose and the name is 
probably a misnomer. No bone fish 
hooks are reported from hereabouts, 
though suggested by early writers. 

Bone Beads and Tubes. While so 
abundant on Iroquoian sites, tubes 
and beads made of hollow bird or other 
animal bones, polished and cut in sec- 
tions, are very rare here. 

Draw Shaves, or Beaming Tools, 
made of bone, and probably used for 
removing the hair from skins, were 
made by splitting the bone of a deer's 
leg, leaving a sharp blade in the middle 
with the joints on either end as han- 
dles. The writer has seen none from 
this immediate region, but they are 
reported by Mr. M. R. Harrington. 
A number were obtained for the Mu- 
seum by Mr. Ernst Volk in the Lenape 
sites near Trenton, New Jersey. An 
implement, evidently made of the 
scapula of a deer, and perhaps used as 
a scraper, was found in a grave at Bur- 
ial Ridge, Tottenville, Staten Island, 
by Mr. George H. Pepper. 

Worked Teeth. Perforated teeth of 
the bear, wolf, and other animals, so 
abundant on Iroquoian sites never seem 
to be found here. Beavers' teeth cut 
and ground to an edge, occur, and may 
have been used as chisels, or primitive 
crooked knives, or both, as they were 
till recently by some of the eastern 
Canadian Algonkin. Other cut beaver 
teeth may have served as dice or count- 
ers in gaming. 



Turtle Shell Cups. These are com- 
mon, and consist merely of the bony 
carapace of the box turtle (Terrapene 
Carolina), scraped and cleaned inside, 
the ribs being cut away from the cov- 
ering to finish the utensil for use. 

Antler Implements. Deer antlers 
and fragments of antler, worked and 
unworked, occur in all shell-heaps and 
pits. When whole antlers are found, 
they usually show at the base the 
marks of the axe or other implement 
used to detach them from the skull. 
Cut antler prongs, prongs broken from 
the main shaft and others partly hol- 
lowed and sharpened show the process 
of manufacture of antler arrow points. 
These are characteristic of this area 
and are usually conical in shape, 
hollowed to receive the shaft, and with 
one or more barbs; not infrequently, 
however, they are diamond-shaped in 
cross-section. The shaft fitted into 
the hollow socket as in the case of the 
conical bone arrow points. A large 
number were found in and among the 
bones of human skeletons in a grave 
at the Burial Ridge, Tottenville, 
Staten Island. 

Cylinders, neatly cut and worked all 
over, or cylindrical tines made of deer 
antler only cut and rounded at the 
ends, are not infrequent, and were 
probably used as flaking tools in mak- 
ing and finishing arrow points by pres- 
sure. One broken cylinder or pin, 
found on the Bowman's Brook site, 
Mariner's Harbor, Staten Island, had 
a rounded, neatly carved head. This 
specimen, however, seems to be unique. 

Pottery stamps, perhaps of antler or 
bone, but which may be of wood, seem 
to have been used, judging by the dec- 
orations of many pottery sherds. A 
pottery stamp, carved from antler, was 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



39 



found slightly cast of this region, at 
Dosoris, Glen Cove Long Island, by 
Mr. M. R. Harrington, and is now in 
the Museum collection. 

Trade Articles. 
In spite of the frequent mention by 
old writers of barter of European for 
Indian goods, the amount of trade 



porcelain, a few glass heads, Venetian 
and plain, and some old pipes, notably 
those stamped "R. Tippei " on the 
howl. All these article- are very rare 
here, and for this no adequate expla- 
nation can be given. 

Resume. 

This area was inhabited during 




LOCATION OF THE NEW YORK COASTAL ALGONKIN AND THEIR NEIGHBORS. 



material found is small indeed. While 
it is abundant in the Iroquoian area, 
all that has ever been found here con- 
sists of a few round-socketed iron tom- 
ahawks, iron hoes, brass or copper 
arrow points of various styles, a little 



historic times by the following tribes: 
A. The Lenni Lenape\ or Delaware, 



i on the map above, these tribes an- shown 
together with the Long Island and other neighbor- 
ing tribes as indicated by Beauchamp in the map 
accompanying ins "Aboriginal Occupation oj New 
York " \«w York State Museum, Hullcon .cj. 
Albany, 1900. 



40 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



ranging from the Raritan River, in- 
cluding Staten Island, to Saugerties 
on the west bank of the Hudson. 

Raritan or Assanhican. 

Hackensack. 

Tappan. 

Aquakanonk. 

Haverstraw. 

Waranawankong. 

B. The Wappinger Confederacy 
ranging along the east bank of the 
Hudson, eastward to Connecticut, 
from Manhattan Island. 

Rechgawawank or Manhattan. 

Siwanoy. 

Weckquaskeck. 

Wappinger. 

C. Montauk or Matouwack Con- 
federacy. 

Canarsie. 

These tribes were surrounded on 
all sides by neighbors of the same 
stock, who differed somewhat in their 
language and culture. On the south 
and west, lay the Lenni Lenape, or 
Delaware proper; on the north, the 
Manhattan, and on the east the 
New England tribes. Almost without 
exception, these natives were displaced 
early in the history of this country, 
and have been long since expatriateel 
or exterminated. A very few mixed 
bloods may yet be found on Staten 
Island, Long Island, and in West- 
chester County, but their percentage 
of Indian blood is extremely low. 

The remains of aboriginal life now 
to be found, consist of shell-heaps, 
occurring at every convenient point 
along the coast, on the rivers, and, 
more rarely, inland; shell, refuse, and 
fire pits; camp, village and burial 
sites; and rock and cave shelters. With 
one prominent exception, 1 few or no 

i Burial Ridge, Tottenville, Staten Island. 



relics have been found in graves. The 
typical interment was of the flexed 
variety, but bone burials are not in- 
frequent. 

Dog skeletons complete and intact, 
bearing the appearance of having 
been laid out, are sometimes found 
buried in separate graves. Some 
writers have supposed that these indi- 
vidual dog burials are the remains of 
"white dog feasts" or kindred prac- 
tices, because the Iroquois even up to 
the present day hold such ceremonies. 
The white dog is entirely cremated by 
the Iroeiuois, and so far as we have 
been able to find out, there is no record 
of such occurrences among the Coastal 
Algonkin; hence, there seems no reason 
to attribute this custom to them since 
other Iroquois traits were so infre- 
quent. It seems more probable that 
such burials are simply those of pet 
animals, interred as we today honor a 
faithful dog. 

Some of these dog burials may have 
been sacrifices made to the Under- 
neath Powers, such as horned snakes, 
just as the Western Indians do today. 

In Waessenaer'sHistorie Von Europe, 

we read of the Mahikan who lived on 

the Upper Hudson. 

It appears that the Sickanamers before- 
mentioned, make a sort of sacrifice. They 
have a hole in a hill in which they place a ket- 
tle full of all sorts of articles that they have, 
either by them, or procured. When there is 
a great quantity collected a snake comes in, 
then they all depart, and the Manittou, 
that is the Devil, comes in the night and 
takes the kettle away, according to the state- 
ment of the Koutsinacka, or Devil Hunter, 
who presides over the ceremony. 1 

****** 

Our Indians may well have sacrificed 
dogs and buried them for these mythi- 
cal snake monsters. 

Occasionally, the skeletons of dogs 
and rarely of other animals have been 

1 Documentary History of New York, III, 28-9. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



41 



found in graves associated with human 
bones. The finding of arrow-heads 

among the ribs of some of these, and 
other circumstances, seem to point to a 
practice of killing a favorite animal on 
the death of its owner to accompany 
or protect the spirit of its master on 
the journey to the hereafter. 

From their appearance and position, 
many graves seem to indicate that 
the dead may sometimes have been 
buried under the lodge, especially in 
time of winter, when the ground out- 
side was frozen too hard to permit 
grave digging. Others under the same 
circumstances seem to have been 
buried in refuse pits. The remains 
further indicate that ''feasts of the 
dead," were also held at the time of 
the interment, judging by the quantity 
of oyster shells and animal bones in 
and near the graves. Some graves 
have rows or layers of oyster shells, 
with the sharp cutting edge upward, 
placed above the bodies as if to pre- 
vent wild animals from disinterring 
and devouring the dead. 

An interesting fact, brought to light 
by the rock-shelter work of Messrs. 
Schrabisch and Harrington in their 
explorations in New Jersey and West- 
chester County, New York, is that 
in the lowest and oldest refuse layers of 
some of these shelters pottery does not 
occur. It would be ill advised to infer 
from this that the earliest occupants 
were peoples of another culture from 
the surrounding village dwellers, as the 
other artifacts found are quite similar 
to the implements of the latter. Many 
reasons for this lack of pottery, such 
as the more easy transportation of 
vessels of bark or wood through the 
mountains and hills, suggest them- 
selves, though they are more or less 



nullified by the presence' of pottery in 
the upper layers. The upper layer, 
however, may have been made during 
the period when the natives were 
being displaced by Europeans and 
at the same time subjected to Iro- 
quoian raids, when the villages 
would naturally be abandoned from 
time to time, for refuge among the 
cliffs and caves of the mountain fast- 
nesses. 

It has been suggested that the rock 
and cave shelters are remains of an 
older occupation by people with or 
without the same culture as the later 
known savages. The nature of the 
finds does not support this view, for 
the specimens obtained are often of as 
good workmanship as the best to be 
found in the villages and cemeteries 
of the latter, while pottery, on the 
other hand, occurs on the oldest known 
Algonkian sites. It seems most prob- 
able to the writer that, like the shell- 
heaps, the rock and cave shelters form 
but a component part, or phase, of the 
local culture, perhaps a little special- 
ized from usage and environment, but 
contemporary with the villages, shell- 
heaps, and cemeteries of the lowlands. 

Mounds and earthworks do not 
occur in the region under consider- 
ation, nor does it appear that mos1 of 
of the Indian villages here were forti- 
fied, unless they were slightly stock- 
aded. A number of instances of this 
are known historically, however, and 
a few earthworks occur just beyond 
this area. 1 

The remains found do not bear any 
appearance of very great geological 
antiquity. In a few instances, rock- 
shelters, shell-heaps, and village sites 

1 An earthwork at Crotoi) Point on the Hudson 
has been excavated by Mr. M. R. Barrington for 
1 hf American Museum. 



42 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



seem to possess a relative antiquity; 
but the oldest known remains, in every 
case, may be placed as Algonkian with 
considerable certainty. No paleoliths 
have been reported, and it would seem 
from the comparative lack of antiquity 
of the remains that the natives could 
not have lived in this region for many 
centuries before the advent of the 
whites. The accounts of contempo- 
rary writers prove conclusively that 
these archaeological remains, if not 
those left by Indians found here by the 
early Dutch and English settlers, must 
have been from people of very similar 
culture. In culture, the local Indians 
were not as high as the Iroquois, nor 
perhaps as the Lenape or Delaware 
proper from whom they sprang; but 
they compare very favorably with the 
New England tribes. Absence and 
scarcity of certain artifacts such as 
steatite vessels, the long stone pestle, 
the gouge, adze, and plummet, and the 



abundance and character of bone and 
pottery articles show them to have 
been intermediate in character be- 
tween the Lenape on the south and 
west, and the New England tribes on 
the east and north; and consultations 
of the old European contemporaries 
show that this was the case linguistic- 
ally as well as culturally. Examination 
of the remains also shows that the 
influence of the Lenape on the west. 
and of the New England peoples on 
the east, was most strongly felt near 
their respective borders. Iroquoian 
influence was strong, as evinced by the 
pottery, and there is also documentary 
evidence to this effect. Finally, as is 
frequent throughout most of eastern 
North America, the archaeological 
remains may be definitely placed as 
belonging to the native Indian tribes 
who held the country at the time of its 
discovery or to their immediate ances- 
tors. 



LOCATION OF ARCHEOLOGICAL REMAINS ON MANHATTAN ISLAND. 



THE first field-work done on Man- 
hattan Island is of very recent 
date. Doubtless many articles 
of Indian manufacture and evidences 
of Indian occupation were found 
as the city grew up from its 
first settlement at Fort Amsterdam, 
but of these specimens we have 
very few T records. An arrow point 
found in the plaster in the wall of 
a Colonial house was, without doubt, 
in the hands of some member of the 
Kortrecht family; and Indian pottery 
has been found in a hut occupied by 
Hessian soldiers during the War of 
Independence. The first specimens 
to have been preserved, to the know- 
ledge of those now interested in the 



subject, were found in 1885, and con- 
sisted of Indian arrow points dis- 
covered in Harlem during excavation 
for a cellar on Avenue A, bet ween 120th 
and 121st Streets. Some of these are 
spoken of by James Riker- as being in 
the author's cabinet. Riker also 
speaks of shell-heaps near here. 3 The 
next specimens preserved were found 
at Kingsbridge Road (now Broadway) 
and 220th Street in 1886, and are in 
the John Neafie collection at the Mu- 
seum. These consist of an arrow point 
and a few bits of pottery. The next 
work was begun in 1889 by Mr. W. L. 



1 By James K. Finch, revised by Leslie Spier. 

2 History of Harlem (1881), footnote, p. 137. 

3 Ibid, p. 366. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



43 



Calver of this city, and has Led to the 

discovery of much valuable material 
which has been preserved. 1 

The following account of the work 
is taken mainly from Mr. Calver's 
note-book : — 

In tin 1 autumn of the year 1889, 
while exploring the heights of Bloom- 
ingdale (now called Cathedral Heights) 
for any relics that might have remained 
from the Battle of Harlem, Mr. 
Calver discovered one arrow point at 
118th Street, east of Ninth Avenue, 
and immediately afterwards a circular 
hammerstone. On a later trip to the 
same locality, lie found a small grooved 
axe or tomahawk. In February, 1890, 
while hunting for Revolutionary rel- 
ics in the vicinity of Fort Washington, 
he made a trip to the northern part of 
the island in search of British regimen- 
tal buttons, many of which were said 
to have been found in that vicinity. 
There he met an old acquaintance, Mr. 
John Pearce, a policeman then on 
duty there, by whom he was intro- 
duced to Mr. James McGuey, a youth 
residing in the vicinity of 198th Street 
and Kingsbridge Road and, while 
crossing tin 1 orchard at Academy Street 
and Seaman Avenue, Mr. Calver saw 
that the ground was thickly strewn 
with shells which afterwards proved 
to be of Indian origin. 

The first Sunday in March, Messrs. 
Calver and McGuey explored this 
part of the Island for Indian 
remains. At the junction of 



1 [n the Spring of L890 Mr. Edward Hagaman 
llall began his investigations and al about tin' 
same time Mr. Reginald PeLbam I Jolt on entered t lie 
field of local research. In many instances these 
gentlemenand Mr W. I. Calver collaborated with 
valuable results. In t hi 1 preservation of t he traces 
nf Indian occupation of Manhattan Island Un- 
American Scenic and Historic Preservation Societj 
funned in 1895 under the presidency of the late 
Hon. \ ndrew lit liven, bill now under that of Dr. 
George Frederick Kun/.i has done much pioneer 
work. 



Academy Street and Prescotf Avenue, 
they found an Indian potsherd the 
importance of which Mr. McGuey 
seemed to realize, for, a week later, 
Mr. Calver met him again and was 
presented by him with a number of 
fragments of Indian ware. He assured 
Mr. Calver that he had found it by 
digging in an Indian graveyard. The 
two men dug again at this place, and 
found more pottery. They then went 
to Cold Spring, a point on the extreme 
northern end of the Island, and in a 
shell-heap there they found more 
Indian work. Mr. Alexander C. 
Chenoweth an engineer, then on the 
Croton Aqueducts, hearing of these 
discoveries, obtained a permit from 
the property owners and began to ex- 
plore "The Knoll," at Dyckman 
Street and Broadway, for Indian re- 
mains. After having finished here, 
he went to Cold Spring and made some 
further discoveries. All his specimens 
were purchased in 1894 by the Mu- 
seum, and some of them are now on 
exhibition. 

Since this time, several interesting- 
relics have been found and, as the 
work of grading streets and other ex- 
cavation at this part of the Island are 
carried on, more relics will probably 
come to light. 

The only Indian remains left on the 
Island so far as known to the writer, 
are situated at the extreme northern 
end at Inwood and Cold Spring. 
They consist of the so-called shell- 
heap:- or refuse piles from Indian 
camps, and three rock-shelters at 
Cold Spring. But we have evidence 
to show that this was not the only 
part of the Island occupied by the 
Indians. Mrs. Lamb' says thai the 

1 Histoiy of New York City. p. 36. 



44 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



Dutch found a large shell-heap on the 
west shore of Fresh Water pond, a 
small pond, mostly swamp, which was 
bounded by the present Bowery, Elm, 
Canal and Pearl Streets, and which 
they named from this circumstance 
Kalch-Hook. In course of time, this 
was abbreviated to Kalch or Collect 
and was applied to the pond itself. 1 
This shell-heap must have been the 
accumulation of quite a village, for 
Mrs. Jno. K. Van Rensselaer 2 speaks 
of a castle called Catiemuts overlook- 
ing a small pond near Canal Street, 
and says that the neighborhood was 
called Shell Point. Hemstreet refers 
to the same castle as being on a 
hill "close by the present Chatham 
Square, " and says that it had once 
been an "Indian lookout." 3 Exca- 
vations at Pearl Street are said to 
to have reached old shell banks. 
"The Memorial History of New 
York" 4 says that a hill near Chatham 
Square was called Warpoes, which 
meant literally a "small hill." 5 
According to the same authority, 
"Corlear's Hoeck was called Naig- 
ianac, literally, 'sandlands.' It may, 
however, have been the name of the 
Indian village which stood there, and 
was in temporary occupation." This 
is the only reference we have to this 
village, but there are references to 
another on the lower end of the Island. 
Janvier 6 says that there was an Indian 
settlement as late as 1661 at Sap- 



1 Mr. Edward Hagaman Hall, however, derives 
the name from "Kolk" or "Kolch" a word still in 
use in Holland and applied to portions of a canal 
or inelosure of water.— Editor. 

2 Goede-Vrouw of Manahata, p. 39. 

3 Hemstreet, Nooks and Corners of Old New 
York, p. 46. 

« Bulletin, N. Y., State Museum, Vol. 7, No. 32, 
p. 107, Feb., 1900. 

6 James G. Wilson, op. cit., p. 52. 
6 Evolution of New York. 



pokanican near the present Ganse- 
voort Market. According to Judge 
Benson, 1 Sappokanican ("tobacco 
field")' 2 was the Indian name for the 
point afterwards known as Greenwich. 
' 'In the Dutch records references are 
made to the Indian village of Sap- 
pokanican; and this name * * *was 
applied for more than a century to the 
region which came to be known as 
Greenwich in the later, English, times. 
The Indian village probably was near 
the site of the present Gansevoort 
Market; but the name seems to have 
been applied to the whole region lying 
between the North River and the 
stream called the Manetta Water or 
Bestavaar's Kill." 3 Benton says that 
the name of the village was Lapini- 
can. 4 Going back to the old Dutch 
records might lead to finding the actual 
names and other data regarding these 
places. 

Most of the specimens found on 
Manhattan Island, as already stated, 
come from the northern part. We 
have a few from the central portion, 
however. There are the arrow-heads 
spoken of by Riker, and in the Webster 
Free Library there is a fine specimen 
of a grooved stone axe found at 77th 
Street and Avenue B. Mr. Calver has 
found an arrow-head at 81st Street and 
Hudson River and specimens from the 
site of Columbia College have been 
recorded. 

Doubtless the northern part of the 
Island was inhabited for the longer 
period; but it is probable that all 
along the shore, wherever one of the 
many springs or small brooks, shown 

1 N. Y. Historical Societv Collections, S. II, 
Vol. II, Pt. I, p. 84, 1848. 

2 All Hilse translations are doubtful. 

3 Thos. A. Janvier, In Old New York, pp. 85-86. 
* New York, p. 26. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



45 



on old maps, emptied into the Hudson 
or East River, there were small, 
temporary Indian camps. It is likely 
that these camps were used only in 
summer, while the primitive occupant 
of Manhattan retreated to the more 
protected part of the Island, as at 
Inwood and Cold Spring, during the 
winter. Or it may be possible that, 
as Ruttenber 1 stales, the villages on 
Manhattan Island were only occupied 
when the Indians were on hunting and 
fishing excursions, while their per- 
manent villages were on the mainland. 
Bolton, 2 however, says their principal 
settlement was on Manhattan Island. 

Fort Washington Point. There is a 
small deposit of shells on the southern 
edge of the point, in which the writer 
found some small pieces of pottery and 
a few flint chips, thus proving its 
Indian origin. This was probably a 
summer camp, as it was too exposed 
for winter use. 

Zerrenner's Farm. A favorable slop- 
ing field at 194th Street and Broadway 
now used for truck farming, was 
utilized as a camp site. Camp debris 
of varied character has been ploughed 
up here. Perhaps the overhanging 
rocks below Ft. Washington, between 
194th and 198th Streets on Bennett 
Avenue afforded the Indians some 
shelter in winter. 

Inwood Station Site. At the foot of 
Dyckman Street and Hudson River, 
there existed a large deposit of shells, 
most of which were removed, when the 
rocks on which they lay were blasted 
away for grading the street. A few 
arrow points and bits of pottery, as 
well as several Revolutionary objects 

1 Indian Tribes of Hudson's River, p. 7s. 
History of Westchester County, p. -!•">. 



were found here. There are photo- 
graphs of this deposit in the Museum. 
Seaman Ai'innc Site. This site, 
between Academy and Hawthorne 
Streets, running through from Seaman 
Avenue to Cooper Street, is the mosl 
extensive village site from which 
remains have been collected. It was ;i 
British camp site during the Revolu- 
tion, and a number of buttons, gun- 
flints and bullets have been found there 
as well as numerous Indian remains. 
It seems to have been the workshop for 
a red jasper-like stone of which numer- 
ous chips but no finished implements 
have been found. The shells at this 
point were first noticed by Mr. ( 'alver 
in 1890. They may not all be of 
Indian origin, as some may be due to 
Revolutionary soldiers. 

Harlan River Deposit. Mr. Calver 
says, "Extending from 209th Street to 
211th Street on the west bank of the 
Harlem River and almost on a line 
with Ninth Avenue was another large 
deposit of oyster shells lying just 
beneath the top soil of the field. These 
shells had nearly all been disturbed by 
the plow and are interesting only for 
their color, which was red. Pieces of 
horn of deer and split bones of 1 he same 
animal were common among the shells: 
but, in spite of the apparent antiquity 
of the deposit, there were, even in the 
lowest strata of it, some small frag- 
ments of glass which proved that either 
the whole mass had been disturbed or 
else the shells had been left during the 
historic period. There arc several 
stone sinkers and hammerstones from 
this spot in Mr. Calver's collection and 
at the Museum. 

IsJioin Park Site. ( >n the knolls 
along the south side of Isham Park, 
and particularly in [sham's Garden, 



46 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



about on the line of Isham Street and 
Seaman Avenue, the soil is white with 
small fragments of shells. A number 
of arrow points, flint chips, hammer- 
stones, sinkers, and potsherds have 
been found here. On the knolls to 
the south of this garden, an Indian bur- 
ial, shell pockets with small deposits 
of pottery, etc., and several dog bur- 
ials, have been found. There are two 
small shell-heaps, containing chips 
and potsherds, in the Park on the 
bank of the Ship Canal, and several 
shell pockets were disturbed in exca- 
vating 218th Street on the north side 
of the Park. 

Cold Spring. Cold Spring is sit- 
uated at the extreme northern end of 
Manhattan Island on the southern 
shore of Spuyten Duyvil Creek. The 
Indian remains consist of three rock- 
shelters and three refuse heaps. The 
rockshelter is a formation where the 
overhanging rocks form a small cave 
or shelter which the Indians used as 
a dwelling place. All their rubbish, 
such as oyster shells, broken pottery, 
and broken arrow-heads, were dumped 
near by, forming the so-called shell- 
heaps. Messrs. Calver and McGuey 
explored the shell-heaps; but Mr. 
Chenoweth was the first to suspect the 
existence of the shelters. There is 
only one which is likely to have been 
used as a dwelling place, the others 
being places where food was stored or 
shelters for fires used in cooking. 
These shelters face east, and are at 
the foot of Inwood Hill (formerly 
called Cock Hill) which forms the 
most northern part of Manhattan 
Island. The largest one was formed 
by several of the rocks breaking off 
the cliffs above and falling in such a 
manner that, by digging out some of 



the earth from beneath them, the 
Indians could make a small shelter. 
Probably it was occupied by one fam- 
ily, while the others lived in bark 
wigwams near by. 1 Another of the 
shelters is simply an excavation under 
the end of a huge fragment which 
also dropped from the cliffs above, 
and the third is a large crevice in 
the foot of these cliffs. When Mr. 
Chenoweth first explored them, all 
these shelters were completely filled 
with earth which had gradually worked 
its way in since their occupation, and 
much credit is due him for suspect- 
ing their presence. In them he found 
fragments of pottery and stone imple- 
ments, together with the bones of 
turkey and deer. The largest of 
the refuse heaps is situated on a 
rise directly in front of these shel- 
ters. It consists of a layer of 
shells, in places one foot thick, found 
under a layer of fine loam, a black 
earth which has been deposited since 
the shells were scattered over the orig- 
inal sandy yellow soil. The sheltered 
position of this place made it an es- 
pecially desirable camp site. The 
hills to the south and west formed a 
protection to the camp from winds, 
and by Spuyten Duyvil Creek access 
could be had to either Hudson or East 
River; while the Cold Spring, from 
which the place takes its name, fur- 
nished an abundant supply of fresh 
water. 

Harlem Ship Canal. Formerly at 
220th Street and Kingsbridge Road 
was a large deposit of shells on the 
westerly side of the road. This was 
destroyed when the ship canal was put 
through. As with the Inwood Station 



1 Memorial History of New York, Vol. I, p. 33, 
for picture of houses, and p. 30 for description. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



47 



site, no systematic examination of 

this place was ever made. Mr. .John 
Neafie found sonic potsherds here in 
1886, Mr. Chenoweth also has sonic 
potsherds from here. 1 Mr. Calver 
says that this was a large deposit, and 
that the peculiar thing about it was 
that the shells were so wedged and 
1 lacked together that a pick would 
hardly penetrate them. They lay 
on the hare rock surface in cracks in 
the rock; a condition common to this 
neighborhood. 

Shell Pockets at tilth Street. In 
March, 1903, there was considerable 
excitement over the reported discov- 
ery of an Indian graveyard at 211th 
Street.- The graveyard proved to have 
been that of some slaves, and was 
situated on the western end of the rise 
between 210th and 211th Streets, on 
the eastern end of which is the old 
Xeagle Burying Ground. This dis- 
covery was interesting because under 
the negro graves several shell pockets 
of undoubted Indian origin came to 
light. The workmen, in grading 
Tenth Avenue, cut into this hill to 
obtain material for filling, and uncov- 
ered the graves and pockets. It seems 
almost certain that the deposits were 
made some time ago; then the wind 
blew the sand over the deposits to a 
depth of four or five feet, and negroes 
later used this place as a burial ground. 
In support of this theory is the fact 
that the pockets were four or five feet 
under the surface, that the soil above 
showed no signs of having been dis- 
turbed, and that this rise is put down 
on the Government maps of this sec- 
tion as a sand dune.' During the 



1 John Neafie collection, 20-2558; Chenoweth, 
20-3498. 

Evening Telegram, March l i. 1903. 
3 New York Geologic Folio. 



summer of 1004, .Mr. Calver with 
Messrs. Hall and Bolton uncovered 
nine or more pockets to the southwesl 
of the graveyard. 1 These pockets 
all seem to have been of the same pe- 
riod as the others, and all appear to 
have been on the original ground sur- 
face, although those farther up the 
hill were some tour feet under the 
present surface. In one of these 
pockets, was found the complete skele- 
ton of a dog- in another, a turtle shell; 
two others contained complete snake 
skeletons; while a fifth held the frag- 
ments of a small pottery vessel. The 
pockets were small, being about three 
feet in diameter and of equal depth, 
showing no signs of having first been 
used as fireplaces and then rilled up, 
though charcoal was scattered aim mg 
the shells. Almost all the relics from 
Van Cortlandt Park were found by 
Mr. .James in pockets similar to these. 
During Indian troubles in 107."). the 
Wickquaskeek at Ann's Hook, now 
Pelham Neck, were told "to remove 
within a fortnight to their usual winter 
quarters within Hellgate upon this 
Island." River says, "This winter 
retreat was either the woodlands be- 
tween Harlem Plains and King-bridge, 
at that date still claimed by these 
Indians as hunting grounds, or Rech- 
awanes and adjoining lands on the 
Bay of Hellgate. as the words 'within 
Hellgate' would strictly mean, and 
which, by the immense shellbeds found 
there formerly, is proved to have been 
a favorite Indian resort." A little 
later the Indians asked to be allowed 
to return to their maize lands on Man- 



1 New York Tribune, on. 30, 1904, and New 
York Sun. Dec. I 1. 1904. 

All thai could !><• saved of this skeleton has 
been presented to the Museum by Mr-. Edward 
Hagaman Hall. 

3 History of Harlem, p. 366. 



48 



AMERICAS MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



hattan Island and the Governor said 
that they, "if they desire it, he admit- 
ted with their wives and children, to 
plant upon this Island, hut nowhere 
else, if they remove; and that it be 
upon the north point of the Island 
near Spuyten Duyvel." 1 

Airs. Mary A. Bolton Post, in writ- 
ing to the editor of "The Evening 
Post," June 10th of the year of the 
opening of the Harlem Ship Canal 
(1895), speaks of some Indians who 
were allowed to camp on the south 
side of Spuyten Duyvil Creek on the 
Bolton property in 1817. Ruttenber 
says that the Reckgawanc had their 
principal village at Yonkers, but that 
on Berrien's Neck (Spuyten Duyvil 
Hill) was situated their castle or fort 
called Nipinichsen. This fort was pro- 
tected by a strong stockade and com- 
manded the romantic scenery of the 
Papirinimen, or Spuyten Duyvil 
Creek, and the Mahicanituk (Hudson 
River), the junction of which was 
called the Shorackappock. It was 
from this castle that the Indians came 
who attacked Hudson on his return 
down the river.- Some small shell 
deposits occur on Spuyten Duyvil Hill, 
but as yet this "castile" has not been 
definitely located. The village site 
at Yonkers, according to Air. James, 
is now covered by buildings; but 
several relics found near the site years 
ago are now in the Manor Hall at that 
place (1904). 

Judging from these references, we 
might conclude that the territory 
occupied by the tribe commonly known 
as Manhattans including Manhattan 
Island and that part of the mainland 
which is west of the Bronx River north 



1 History of Harlem, p. 369. 

2 Ruttenber, pp. 77-78. 



of Yonkers, and that these Indians 
were a sub-tribe of the Wappinger 
division of the Mahikan. 

Notable Types of Remains. 

Dog Burials. The first dog burials 
were found by Mr. Calver in 1895. 
The first burial was unearthed at the 
summit of a ridge of soft earth at 209th 
Street, near the Harlem River. The 
ridge, which was about twelve feet 
high, had been partly cut away for the 
grading of Ninth Avenue. It was 
at the highest part of the hillock that 
a pocket of oyster and clam shells was 
noticed, from which a few fragments 
of Indian pottery which lay on the 
face of the bank had evidently fallen. 
The shells, upon inspection, were found 
to have served as a covering for the 
skeleton of a dog or wolf. Another 
burial was found on May 18th within 
fifty yards of the first burial. It had 
been covered with shells just as the 
first one, but had been disturbed by 
workmen. Mr. Calver says: "The 
two canine burials were situated at a 
point just without the borders of the 
Harlem River shell-heap and were 
distinct from it. The shells were 
found to be matched, hence it was con- 
cluded that they were thrown in un- 
opened or eaten on the spot. As the 
skeletons were intact and the bones 
uninjured, all probability of the ani- 
mals having been eaten is disposed of. " 
These burials are common in this 
vicinity, Mr. Calver thinks they were 
for some religious purpose, and suggests 
a relation to the "White Dog Feast" 
of the Onondaga of this state. 1 How- 
ever, it is known that the carcass of 
the sacrificed dog was burnt by the 

1 New York Herald. May 26, 1895. 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



49 



Iroquois and the explanation given on 
page 40 is probably correct. 

Indian Burials. Notwithstanding 
all the efforts of various collectors, 
the first Indian burials to be discovered 
on the Island were due to the activi- 
ties of Messrs. Bolton and Calver in 
1904. The improvement of Seaman 
Avenue, Inwood, at that time, uncov- 
ered many relics of the long extinct 
Indian inhabitants among which Mr. 
Bolton saw unmistakable signs of 



mass of oyster shells, some of which 
were unopened, the skeleton reclined 
on its right side, facing west. The 
arms were flexed and crossed, t he knees 
bent and the head thrown back. Xo 
traces of weapons were found, nor 
were there any other objects found, 
save a fragment of an animal bone. 
"The location and position led to 
further exploration, which, early in 
1908, led to still more interesting dis- 
coveries. Sunday, March 22nd, being 




INDIAN BURIAL, MANHATTAN. 



Indian graves. To quote from this 
gentleman: "It thus became evident 
that there were human interments 
in the vicinity, and in August, 1907, 
the first burial was discovered under 
a shell pit in Corbett's garden. The 
grading process had been extended 
only about eighteen inches below the 
sod, but had sufficed to destroy the 
jaw of the skeleton which extended 
upwards, as did also the foot bones. 
The bones lay in and upon a close 



the first day in the held for exploration 
for the season for 1908, W. L. Calver 

and the writer met at Seaman Avenue 
and Hawthorne Street, .Manhattan, 
to discuss plans for further excavations 
on this Indian village site. The rains 
of the winter 1907-8 had washed the 
west bank where the layer of oyster 
shells and black dirt lay along the 
hill, and a patch of red burnt earth 
was observed, which on digging out, 
disclosed a fireplace, evidently of the 



50 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



period of the Revolution, having some 
large burnt stones, ashes, wood char- 
coal, brick, broken rum bottles, a wine 
glass nearly complete, a large open 
clasp-knife with bone handle, a hoop- 
iron pot-hook, various forged head 
nails and a curious folding corkscrew. 
Gold buttons of Revolutionary pattern 
and an officer's silver button of the 
Royal Marines, together with pewter 
buttons of the 17th Regiment dis- 
closed who had occupied the spot. 

' 'At one part of this fireplace, we 
came upon a pocket of oyster shells, 
evidently Indian, about two feet deep, 
and on removing some of these, had 
the good fortune to uncover a human 
thigh-bone. We worked carefully 
into the shells and under the pocket, 
gradually disclosing the complete re- 
mains of a full-grown man lying on its 
right side, feet to the north, head 
facing east, knees doubled up, the 
left arm extended down through the 
thighs. The feet had been within the 
area of the hole in which the Revolu- 
tionary fireplace had been made, and 
only one or two foot bones were found. 
At a later period other foot bones were 
found on the opposite side of the Rev- 
olutionary fireplace, evidently having 
been displaced in its construction. 
The right arm was flexed, and the 
hand was under the head, the latter 
was intact and every tooth was in 
place. Shells had been packed over 
the body, and some around it. We 
were much puzzled by a number of 
human bones lying compactly together 
by the skeleton, in a position that 
would have been in its lap, had it been 
upright. 

"We removed the skull, covered 
the remains, and on Sunday, March 
29th, renewed the work. W T e went 



carefully to work upon the cluster of 
mixed bones in front of the large skel- 
eton, and soon found them to be rather 
compactly arranged in a rectangular 
form about 14 by 26 inches, the long 
bones parallel. The vertebrae abrupt- 
ly ended parallel with the head of the 
larger skeleton, and after working some 
time, we found a skull placed below, 
beneath the pile of bones in a vertical 
position, facing north, the lower jaw of 
which was disengaged, and was placed 
sideways in front of the face. The 
back of the skull was broken in, and 
was black with marks of burning. 
The lower jaw was burned, and some 
of the teeth split by fire. The arm 
and leg bones were charred at the 
joints. Inside the skull was a burned 
toe bone. Some oyster shells were 
among the charred remains. 

"A significant fact was that the 
right arm bones of the large skeleton 
were below the pile of burned bones. 
This feature, and the compact arrange- 
ment of the latter within the space 
in front of and at the same level as the 
large skeleton, seem to point strongly 
towards an intentional arrangement 
of these bones, in front of the large 
corpse and to indicate the simultane- 
ous burial of the two bodies. On ex- 
amination, the large skeleton proved 
to be that of an adult male, and the 
dismembered remains those of a female 
of about 35 years of age. No imple- 
ments were found with the remains, 
but a part of a stone pestle and a rude 
celt lay under the sod among the oy- 
sters above the large skeleton. 

"On Sunday, June 14, 1908, another 
burial was found about 20 feet north 
of the above. This burial consisted 
of an adult skeleton doubled up and 
its back much curved, and was appar- 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAM) 



51 




SA« 



Mdiu/tftome St 



5<D 




°0 



LOCATION OF BURIALS, PITS AND SHELL-BEDS NEAR INWOOD. 



I Euman remains. 2. Shell pit, deer antler. S. shell pit. 
nits 6 shell pit, sturgeon below. 7. Shell pit. sturgeon seal, 
remains li. Fire pit. l-'. Shell pit. L3. Dog burial,_puppj 
16. shell pit, flsh and meat bones. 17. shell pits. 



4 Shell pit, pottery. ■">■ shell 

s 8 9 Shell pits. 10. Unman 

ii. shell pit. 15. Pari of a jar. 

Two dogs in shell pit. L9. Human skeleton 

" small Are pits 




splace, 
Revolutionary well 



52 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



ently that of a female of mature age. 
Between the knees, the remains of a 
small infant were laid, the skull of the 
latter being fragmentary. The right 
hand of the adult was below the infant 
and the left hand around the throat. 
The skull was intact and had nearly 
all the teeth. One finger bone had 
grown together at the joint in a crook- 
ed position apparently due to disease. 
On lifting the ribs of the right side, an 
arrow-head of flint fell out between the 
fourth and fifth bones. These skele- 
tons lay about two and a half feet be- 
low the grass, and a pocket of oyster 
shells was over the head. The woman's 
remains lay within a space about 31 
inches long by 50 inches wide, flat 
in the hard red sand bed facing 
east. 

"Shortly after these remains were 
discovered, Mr. Chenoweth extended 
the excavation previously made by 
the explorers at the side of a large 
oyster shell pit in the same bank of 
sand, and uncovered a male skeleton 
of which he preserved the skull. Some 
small fragments of the skeleton were 
afterwards found by the writer on this 
spot. Contractors for the sewer in 
Seaman Avenue also uncovered the 
remains of a young female close to the 
position of several of the shell pits 
previously described. 

"These interments have some curi- 
ous features. The position of the 
remains facing east, sometimes west, 
the absence of weapons or other ob- 
jects and the oyster shells packed with 
or above them are subjects for inter- 
esting discussion on which future 
finds may throw much light, as also 
upon the peculiar double burial and 
the burnt state of the female re- 
mains. " 



Bibliography. 

Anthropological Papers of the Amer- 
ican Museum of Natural History, Vol- 
ume III; Hudson-Fulton Publication, 
' ' The Indians of Greater New York 
and the Lower Hudson." New York, 
1909. 

This volume contains a series of 
papers by Messrs. Finch, Bolton, 
Harrington, Speck, Schrabisch, and 
Skinner, dealing minutely with all 
phases of the subject in a thoroughly 
scientific and less popular manner than 
the present volume. Especial atten- 
tion is paid to the research in local 
archaeology, with maps and notes on 
most of the important sites. The 
Museum also published a guide leaf- 
let to the collection on exhibition. 

Skinner, Alanson, The Indians of 
Greater New York; Torch Press, 
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1915. 

A very full and thoroughgoing ac- 
count of the history and ethnology 
of the local Indians, containing many 
sources not available at the time when 
volume III of the Anthropological 
Papers was published. The archaeol- 
ogy of the locality is also written up 
in a more popular style than the 
preceding publication. These two 
papers with the present guide leaflet 
bring the subject of our local Indians 
thoroughly up to date and summarize 
the older authors. 

Ruttenber, E. M., History of the 
Indian Tribes of the Hudson River. 
Albany, 1872. 

A little old-fashioned in style, and 
with a few errors, but brimful of all 
sorts of useful information on the 
subject. 

Beauchamp, Rev. W. M., Bulletin 
of the New York State Museum. Nos. 
16, 18, 22, 32, 41. 



BD 12.8 



INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND 



:,:; 



These list, figure, and describe the 
types of chipped and polished stone 
implements, and the pottery, shell, 
hone, metal, and wooden utensils 
found in New York State. Bulletin 
32 contains a list of all the Indian 
village and cam]) sites, shell-heaps, 
lock and cave shelters, and cemeteries 
then recorded from the entire State, 
with a map upon which the locations 
of these are plotted. This series is 
invaluable to the student, especially 
to one engaged in research work. 

Farrand, Livingston, Basis of Amer- 
ican History. Harpers: The American 
Nation Nation Series; Vol. I. 

"This volume contains a careful 
review of the physical features of 
North America, which is exceedingly 
helpful to the student in understanding 
the development of the various colo- 
nies. This is supplemented by a survey 
of the principal lines of communica- 
tion — Indian trails, portages, water- 
ways, and mountain passes — which 
have been of the utmost importance 
in determining the course of events 
in American history * Of 

particular value is Professor Farrand's 
able discussion of the American 
Indians. Reasoning from a great mass 
of collected data, he reaches sane 
and conservative conclusions. The 
author has made a point of condensa- 
tion, and has supplied the want of a 
thorough, systematic study of the 
Indians in a small compass." 

Heckwelder, ./. G. E., History, Man- 
ners, and Customs of the Indian 
Nations who once inhabited Pennsyl- 
vania. Philadelphia, 1876. 

At the present writing this is the 
most complete source of information 
on the Delaware Indians from the 



time of their migration from New 
■Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania to 
the Ohio Valley. 

Harrington, M. R., " Some Customs 
of the Delaware Indians;" the Mus- 
eum .Journal of the Museum of the 
University of Pennsylvania, Vol. I, 
No. 3; and "Vestiges of Material 
Culture Among the Canadian Dela- 
wares," American Anthropologist, 
N. S. Vol. 10 No. 3, DOS, A Prelim- 
inary Sketch of Lenape* culture, Ibid 
Vol. 15 P. 208. 

The most recent account of the 
Delaware, but merely preliminary 
sketches, forerunners of a much larger 
work based on personal archaeological 
research about New York City and 
ethnological study among the surviving 
Delaware of Canada and Oklahoma, 
which, when given to the public, will 
be the dernier mot on the subject. 

Brinton, D. G., The Lenape and 
Their Legends; Philadelphia, 1885. 
This work contains the Walum Olum 
and its translation, in addition to a 
mass of ethnological material. An 
excellent treatise on the Delaware 
Indians. 

O'Callaghan, K. B., Documentary 

History of New York. Four volumes; 
Albany. 1S03-7. 

Contains, as its name implies, many 
of the early documents relating to the 
settlement of New York. A very 
important work containing many of 
the sources of the present volume. 

De Vries, David Peterson, Voyages 

from Holland to America; (trans- 
lation); New York, 1853. A rare and 
valuable work, to be obtained only in 
the large public libraries. This is the 
personal account of the good patroon's 
own experience as an eye-witness and 



54 



AMERICAN MUSEUM GUIDE LEAFLETS 



participator in the early Indian wars 
in the New Netherlands. Written in 
a naive, fluent and interesting manner. 

Morgan, Lewis II., The League of 
the Iroquois. In several editions. 

A comprehensive study of the Five, 
later Six Nations, especially of the 
Seneca. One of the first careful scien- 
tific studies ever made of any tribe, and 
still a classic. 

Parker, A. C, An Erie Indian 
Milage and Cemetery, Iroquois Corn 
Foods, and other publications in the 
Bulletins of the New York State Mu- 
seum, Albany, N. Y.; in thesame series 
as those of Dr. William Beauchamp. 



The first of the works mentioned is 
the best published account of the 
archaeological work on any one site 
in the State, and should be read by 
everyone intending to do research. 

The second gives a valuable insight 
intoancient Indian methods of cookery. 

All of Mr. Parker's works are val- 
uable because of his deep knowledge 
of all things Indian and his experience 
as State Archaeologist. 

Furman, Gabriel, Antiquities of Long 
Island, N. Y. 1874. 

Tooker, W. IF., Indian Place-Names 
on Long Island, N. Y., 1911 (Knick- 
erbocker Press). 




THE THUNDERBIRD 

Engraved on a fragment of pottery found at Shinnecock Hills, Long Island. The thunder- 
birds were gods and patrons of warriors and it is one of their duties to guard mankind from the 
evil horned serpents (page 10) that dwell under the earth or beneath the waters. 



The collection, which represents about 500 falls, numbering some 2,000 

specimens, includes the great. "Ahnighi to" meteorite, weighing 30}2 tons, 

brought from Greenland by Peary, the strange "Willamette" meteorite 

and the "Canyon Diablo" which contains minute diamonds. 

THE HABITAT GROUPS OF NORTH AMERICAN BIRDS. By Frank M. Cu \p- 

max, Curator of Ornithology. February, 1909. Price, 15 cents. . 

These celebrated groups arc d< signed to illustrate not only the habits 
but also the haunts, or habitats, of the species shown. The backgrounds 
are careful studies from nature and each represents some definite locality. 
Twenty-two of these groups arc shown in this leaflet. 
THE BATRACHIANS OF THE VICINITY OF NEW YORK CITY. By Raymond 
L. Ditmars, Curator of Reptiles, New York Zoological Park. October, 1905, 
Price, 15 cents. 
THE BIRDS OF THE VICINITY OF NEW YORK CITY. By Frank M. Chap- 
man, Curator of Ornithology. April-July, 1806. Price, 15 cents. 
THE EVOLUTION OF THE HORSE. By W. D. Matthew, Ph.D., Curator, 
Department of Vertebrate Palaeontology. 63 pages, 39 illustrations. Price, 20 
cents. 

The past geologic history of the Horse affords the most complete and 
convincing illustration of evolution among mammals. This leaflet, based 
upon material in this Museum, describes the successive stages in its evolution 
from the four-toed "Eohippus no bigger than a fox" to the single-toed horse 
of to-day. 
THE INDIANS OF MANHATTAN ISLAND AND VICINITY. By Alanson 
Skinner, Assistant Curator, Department of Anthropology. April, 1915. 
Price, 20 cents. 
BRIEF HISTORY OF ANTARCTIC EXPLORATION. March, 1910. Revised 
March, 1915. Price, 10 cents. 

A summary of the Exploration of Antarctic Regions, from the voyage of 
Captain Cook in 176S-1777 down to Mawson's expedition in 1913. 
PLANT FORMS IN WAX. By E. C. B. Fassett. November, 1911. Price, 10 
cents. 

Tells how reproductions of foliage and flowers, such as arc used in the 
bird groups, are made. 
HOW TO COLLECT AND PRESERVE INSECTS. By Frank E. Lutz. Price, 

10 cents 
OUR COMMON BUTTERFLIES. By Frank E. Lutz and F. E. Watson. 

Describes and figures natural size about 40 species of our more common 
butterflies. Price, 15 cents. 



GUIDE TO THE COLLECTIONS 
ILLUSTRATED 

New Edition issued December, 1914, 127 pages, 
65 illustrations, many full page. Price 25 cents. 



These publications may be purchased in the Visitors' Room, near the 
entrance, from the Attendants or from the Librarian. 




AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY 



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